Monday, October 15, 2012

Finding Peace {Mindful Mothering Mondays}


The 3 year old has been crying or tantrumming all day.  It's almost 3 and I'm just finishing up school, with dinner and laundry and the rest of my daily work to come after that.  I take a few minutes to read him a book and calm him down, but his sobs return when I turn back to my chores.

I vent my frustration to a friend who gently says: "Tell me when you figure out how to be all things to all people at all times."  I don't realize it then, but she's given me a gift.

You see, the daily killing off of peace starts with expectations.  And us Mamas, we heap them onto ourselves, don't we?  We expect ourselves to make all the "right" decisions at all times, be completely on top of the lives of our children in all ways, no matter how many we have.  We expect to never make a mistake, never lose control, never get it wrong.  With expectations like those, who needs enemies?  We lay the battleground with...ourselves.

More and more, I'm seeing what the oft-referenced "Mommy Wars" are truly about.  Not battle between mothers of different viewpoints and backgrounds.  Not tangles between working and non working Moms.  No, the mommy wars are the battles we fight inside our very own selves.  The expectations we fail to meet, the criticism we heap upon ourselves when we show ourselves to be less than perfect.  No one else in the world cares as much about our mothering than we do.  And no one can get us where it hurts quite like we can, either.

In some ways, we've been led to believe these things.  All of the articles that come out that tell us the studies, the things that we can do or not do that can inflict disaster on the people we love the most.  Anxiety rains down as we hang on every word, fretting about where we fall short, how we can't keep up, how maybe we can't be perfection in Motherhood.  We lay awake nights and wonder, if we just got up earlier, tried harder, read more books, prayed more - would we be able to ensure positive futures for our little ones?

We've been set up to believe that the perfect mother is omniscient and omnipresent.  All things to all people at all times, as my friend said. Knowing all things. We've been told that if we do everything right, we won't ever have children who struggle, children who hurt, children who screw up.  Our peace is stolen the very moment we start to believe that we are, well, God - when it comes to the raising of our children.  That we are solely responsible for how it all shakes out.

All of those deceptions only serve as distractions from the real point of what we do here: receive these little ones from Him, partner with him to do our very (human) best, and then gently let them go.  God knows we aren't perfect - yet he entrusted us with this great work anyway.

Letting go of lies can be hard.  They are our pets, in a way, constant companions, even as they rip us to shreds.  But healing and yes, peace, comes when we can say "I am not the be all, end all in my child's life."  We have a partner in this journey who does see it all, know it all.  We don't have to try to be God because He is - and He is at our side in this work every day, loving our children more than we could even fathom, covering our mistakes and teaching us a few things along the way...if we let Him.

If He is willing to let less than perfect Mothers raise His little ones, maybe it could be good enough for us, too?

Praying on this with you today.


{It's Mindful Mothering Mondays, a day to take a deep breath and write out your mothering journey, whatever form it takes. A day to link up for encouragement from others who are in this same phase of life. A day of writing out the trials and triumphs and what you're learning right where you are, right now.

You might post recent struggles or thoughts. Maybe just a picture or a quote. Or maybe you'll just come here and read the links that others post. Whatever form your participation takes, this is a day for you.
We are all in this, together. Together, we can encourage and build one another up, be honest with our shortcomings and strengthened by community to keep fighting the good fight.

I chose Mondays because what Mama doesn't need a little encouragement on a Monday? As such, I'll have the link up ready to go on Sunday night for you to begin submitting your links.

I hope you'll meet with me each Monday! Here's what to do ~

Link up your post below. Remember to put the link to the exact post you want to link, and not just your blog url. Include in your post a link back here so others who want to join in can find us! And visit some other Mamas who have linked up.

Post the community graphic within your post, so people who are reading your Mindful Mothering post can come back here and find the rest of us!

Invite the writers of your favorite blogs to join in!

Share this meme with others on facebook and twitter. This community is for all moms, and the more that participate, the more we will be able to enjoy!!}

Grab the graphic here:


Psst! Are you interested in being our featured poster on a Mindful Mothering Monday? I'm opening up Mondays for guest posters. If interested, please submit your completed post along with photographs in jpeg format to lydiajwill at gmail dot com. I look forward to hearing from you!

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or follow me by email at the top right hand of the screen to have future posts sent to you.


  1. Totally with you on the unrealistic's one of the reasons I wrote about discontentment this morning :)

    1. Expectations do seem like a massive trap. Hard to shake off, though. Thank you for linking!

  2. Thanks for this post. I'm single, not a mom, but I work in international student services which is a LOT like mothering, sometimes. ;) I got encouragement and food for thought out of this post, as well. So thanks!

    1. I imagine there are a lot of commonalities with you job and mine as a Mom. Thank you for coming by and for your comment!

  3. Oh so needed this today, I am struggling in my role as mama today...hanging in there, but barely.

    1. I know the feeling all too well. Hang in there!

  4. It may sound creepy... but I certainly wish that you were a neighbor of mine I could walk to or call when I lose sight of what this journey is all about. You always speak truth to my soul!!

  5. I totally linked to my old mothering monday last monday! Ha! Sorry about that!


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