I recently heard a radio program talking about the pressure our culture and media puts on women to be the perfect mum. Times have changed. Women are expected to have the career, yet cook the meals, do the laundry, clean the home, pack the lunches, carpool around town, design the home, buy the birthday gifts, do the grocery shopping, dress the children, host the parties, buy the gifts, mold the character of their children... I feel exhausted just making this list, and I have only touched on a few of the overwhelming responsibilties of being a mother!
The guest on the radio show cut through all of these daunting tasks, and spoke directly to the fear women have of not being the perfect mum. Maybe you are not the type of woman who loves to don the apron, turn on the oven and bake with your child. Or perhaps you don't particularily feel inspired about playing another round of CandyLand with your little one. Maybe the thought of teaching your child to kick a ball sends you reeling back to that traumatic gym class. Maybe you feel guilty for not being the type of mom who can think of a craft idea on the spur of the moment. Perhaps the thought of taking your children on a nature walk sends you running for the bug spray.
Instead of treading through motherhood with the guilt of feeling as though you don't have what it takes, think of what inspires you and chances are, you have already instilled this in your child. If you run away at the thought of a sing-a-long, but absolutely love the world of science, run with the science theme. If the thought of teaching a sport to your little one sends you to the nearest couch, but you love to read, let someone else teach your child how to kick a ball and take a trip together to the library.
After listening to this advice, I became stunningly aware of what I have instilled in my daughters. Everyday, starting at 8 am, they ask in their high-pitched toddler voice, "mummy make a craft?". Apparently I have infused in them a love of creativity, without even intending to. Now, instead of inwardly groaning and dragging my feet to the craft cupboard, I try and remind myself that this is my own doing. The dream of creating with my very own children has come true, and I wouldn't miss it for the world.
When the mummy guilt sets in, remind yourself what really inspires you and chances are, you have already instilled this passion in your litte one(s)... then put your mental feet up and out-source the rest!