Little J has been showing signs and interest in potty training, he has been taking off his diaper, flushing the big potty, telling me when he has “poo-poo” in his diaper. I knew he was ready to make the leap into big boy underwear, but I wasn’t ready. We have an upcoming trip planned with several families up North and will be sharing a cabin with some good friends. The thought of watching little J every moment for accidents during vacation seemed no fun at all so I planned to start potty training in September or October….. until a few days ago.
I was chatting with my mom on the phone watching little J play around me in the living room. He had taken his diaper off (again, sigh) disappeared towards the hall and returned a few moments later carrying his potty chair. He placed it down in front of me, sat down, and went pee pee. Just like that my diaper plan for the cabin went out the window. We were potty training. Today.
As I reflect on conversations with my different mommy friends, we all plan, we all have expectations. From birth to breast feeding to cloth diapering, sleeping through the night to potty training, we all had a picture in our mind of what we throught the experience would look like.
Society places value on our ability to appropriately plan a schedule, workload, and manage others as a highly sought after strength. You are considered strategic, intentional, thoughtful, surely characteristics of success. I’ve realized there is value to being planful and organized but as a mom, my learning lessons don’t usually come from a lack of planning. They are found in the moments when I planned perfectly but my little one had a different idea in mind; a new tooth, a cold, a shorter than expected nap, or maybe just needed some “mom” time when I really needed some cleaning time.
Busy mommies, I want to encourage you. You are not alone. In a Pinterest world it’s so easy to strive for perfection, but kids don’t need us to be perfect. They just need us. Even in our not-so-proud parenting moments, they need to see us apologize, ask for forgiveness. It’s so easy to be tough on ourselves, to compare ourselves to others, but as I open my heart to other moms, and listen to their hearts, we all have burdens, doubts, and struggles. Let’s encourage each other this week, send a note, leave a message, bring a meal, love one another.