This weekend, my son got his first bike.
It’s the kind without pedals, meant to teach him balance. Riding it is all he wants to do. All the time. And when I look at his little face, so totally focused on his task, I can see myself.
My energies tend toward extremes. If I do something, I want to do it 100%. Otherwise, I feel that I lack commitment. That I’m somehow an imposter.
Whatever I’m tackling, it can’t be anything unless it is everything.
So being a stay-at-home mom was a struggle for me. Although I love being with my son, much of the Mommy lifestyle is outside my comfort zone. I find all the activities, classes, and play dates physically and mentally draining. And for awhile, I beat myself up for that. I felt that if I wasn’t giving it everything, I wasn’t doing it right. Or worse, that I didn’t deserve this awesome opportunity I had been given.
But we can’t shame ourselves into being something we’re not.
At some point, we have to accept that we are who we are and move forward. My kid will be just fine, even if I’m not the most outgoing Mom on the playground. And my career will be fine, too, even if for now, I can only squeeze in a few hours after bedtime.
Like the bike with no pedals, it feels awkward and scary. But eventually we find our balance.
I totally understand and relate. I’m glad we know you guys cause it gives me something to look forward to at story time…otherwise I fear it’d turn into “just a trip to work” for me.
Simple but eloquent!
It’s funny, I relate to the draining experience of being stay at home mum. But I struggled with being home with the kids and would always try and get out to classes and play dates every day! At least we have more choice over how we get that balance than our, or certainly my, mum did!
So true, Helen! Balance is a problem modern women are lucky enough to have.
I think sometimes I’m not only without pedals, I also only have one wheel. And an elephant riding on my shoulders.
But thanks for this post – it speaks very truly.