Maybe it's me but I have this need, whenever anyone compliments me, to immediately give them all the reasons why that compliment is inaccurate. Of course I find it super annoying when I compliments someone and they do that, but I can't help myself it just happens. You know, someone says, "Wow, you look super cute today." And you say, "Oh my gosh, I forgot to put on mascara!" Or something that discredits the compliment. Why do we do that? Why is it so hard to take a compliment? It's frustrating to me because, in the spirit of trying to be humble, I end up being self-deprecating.
I am a person who thrives off of affirmation. I would rather get praised for something than receive a gift. However, it has to be the right person. If it is a person, who's opinion I really value, than their praise means the world to me. If it's a person I don't know or don't admire it doesn't mean much. However, I have struggled more in my adult years with caring what other people think of me than I ever did when I was younger. Being a Pastor's kid my life was under a microscope a little bit. I went to a private school that was connected with our church and teachers would threaten to call my dad if I acted up. It was frustrating at times. Now, having five small children three of which are triplets I feel like my life is constantly on display. Everywhere we go people stare and make comments. Some affirming comments and some hurtful comments. Some valuable advice and some invasive advise. Some well meaning opinions and some undeserving opinions.
I have heard, numerous times, "Wow, you're super mom!" That comment has come with both great pride and great pressure. I love that some people think that having that many kids that close together is super hero status. Most people that say, "Wow you're super mom," don't know me and are simply saying that based on the number of children I have that are close in age.
For the last few months now I have felt run down; emotionally and physically. At the end of the day I feel so defeated and drained. As I've been processing where this feeling is coming from I keep thinking "pressure." I feel pressure to live up to this "super mom" persona. I find myself thinking, "Super mom cooks and doesn't eat out 90% of the time! Super-mom doesn't lose her patience. Super mom homeschool her kids. Super mom doesn't ever let her kids play on iPads. Super mom is organized and neat. Super mom makes her bed and teaches her children to all make their beds. Super mom's kids eat a healthy meal and love vegetables. Super mom does NOT TAKE NAPS she's SUPER!" No one has ever said those things to me, that's just what I picture when I picture super mom. It's also what I see when I look on social media at the amazing people in my life. I'm taking little pieces of all the mom's I see and I'm combining them and telling myself that's who I should be!
I find myself parenting how "super mom" would parent and not based on things I find important. There are times that I'll get so worked up about an issue and then I'll realize it's actually not an issue to me. At the end of the day I want my kids to love God and honor Him, and love people. If they don't eat vegetables for dinner does that effect my desired goal for their lives?
What I am realizing is, I have made judgements in my own heart either about myself or about others and it is causing me to put pressure on myself. I have to let go of those judgements if I ever want to be released of the pressure I am feeling. I have decided that I am going to look for something I admire in each person in my life including myself! I heard a saying one time, "Whatever you are intent to prove, you will." So I believe if I am seeking out the good in people then there is no room for judgement. Also, I am going to allow myself to really receive people's compliments. Really receive them, not just say, "Thank you." And, I am going to realize that being a mom is SUPER just for the fact that we get to be moms! It doesn't matter if you have 1 kid or 5 kids. It doesn't matter if you birthed that kid or someone else did. It doesn't matter if you breast fed your kid or you didn't. Being a mom is SUPER.