I recently saw a video about mom shaming. It was posted by a woman that I have come to admire, though I have never met her. She keeps things real. She speaks from the heart. She is funny.
In one video post she is hiding in her pantry with a pot of coffee encouraging moms that you are enough. In another, she is sharing how she was ready to love again after her divorce. Very real, at times very raw.
One of her recent video posts, as I mentioned, was about mom shaming. What not to do. How to turn your judgment into something positive. How to be kind. It was a great, funny video.
I just couldn't relate.
I couldn't relate because I can't think of a time I was mom shamed. Oh, I'm sure people had their opinions but my radar never picked up on it.
So I've been thinking ... why? Why didn't I hear anyone say anything about the fact that I didn't breastfeed. I had no desire to. I tried with my 1st son, for like a day. I tried with my 2nd son, for like an evening. By the time my 3rd son came I was happy to tell the nurse to put on our chart "Bottle Fed". I just didn't care. I had zero guilt about it. I didn't like it, still don't. I think it is fine for you but I won't and didn't do it.
I home schooled my guys for the better half of 6 years. Truly the only reason I stopped was because I got a divorce and needed to go back to work. Now that I've been in the corporate world and I share my story no one says anything in a negative way. It's actually admired.
I'm divorced ... no shaming me for being a single mom. A mom of boys no less.
I gained weight and lost weight. Not a peep. I wore makeup and dressed up. I wore my PJ's and I'm fairly confident didn't brush my hair most days. Silence.
So why do I think that I appear to have never been mom shamed?
A few things come to mind.
1. I focused on what was important. My relationship with God, my husband, my kids and myself. I hung out with people that were uplifting and in the trenches with me. If you brought drama or craziness, you were out. I simply didn't and still don't have time for it.
2. I knew who I was. I have never doubted my calling in life. I am not one to long to find my purpose. I have embraced each season of my life. I'm totally fine with coffee stained t-shirts while snuggled with my little ones to being dressed up fancy, going to some meeting at work. I have always known that where I am is where I am to be.
3. I'm a loner. Take you or leave you but I'm all good. I enjoy my time to myself. So if you shunned me, I didn't notice because I wanted to be alone. It was a welcome relief not to have to entertain someone else. I enjoy hanging out with myself.
Why am I sharing this? I don't know. I guess I just want another mom to realize that it doesn't matter what another mom thinks. That we are all human. We are perfectly flawed. Our kids are the best thing that has ever happened to us. Nothing else matters but the relationship you have with them.
People who tend to voice a lot of opinions or judgments seem to be the most insecure about themselves. It's actually sad. It would benefit them and yourself to be kind and pray for them.
So breastfeed if you want. Take a shower, put on makeup. Do you hair. Stay in your jammies. Eat ice cream for breakfast. Home school or volunteer at your kids' school ... or don't.
This next statement is simplistic and may cause a spiral of emotions but here goes ...
JUST BE YOU.
You are enough, you are OK.