I don’t play with my kids…

Over the years, I’ve found the pressure to be the “perfect mom” incredibly exhausting.

The expectation to:

– make all the perfect meals

-discipline correctly

-do all the crafts

-have amazing birthday parties

-potty train the right way

-breastfeed or bottle feed

-read to my kids enough

-play and create things with them each day

and the list goes on and on and on….

For years, I tried to keep up with it all. I loved that people looked to me as someone who had it all together, but I was exhausted.

I was constantly reading parenting books to make sure I was doing it all the “right” way. As I grew older, and had more children, I realized…there is no magic formula for this. No one thing works for every kid, and there was no list I could check-off to keep them from having problems or issues within their lives.

I’ve learned to acknowledge WHAT I do well, and leave the rest alone. I want to enjoy these years, and not live in exhaustion trying to strive for perfection. Instead, I want to embrace my WHO I AM…my strength and weaknesses, accepting both.

So…here is the truth:

I do not like to play with my kids.

I never have.

I like to be with my kids, I love their amazing personalities and spending time with them. I love to talk to them, travel with them and do activities with them.

But I don’t like to play.

I don’t like getting on the ground and playing with cars, Lego’s or any other type of play. I have accepted I’m not that mom, nor do I need to be. It’s exhausting for me.

I don’t like to do crafts and make things together. There are times I will for their enjoyment, but I don’t really like it. That is O.K.

There are things in parenting that cause me more stress than enjoyment. I’ve learned to recognize what I am good at and what I’m not good at. I’m no longer trying to change myself to be something I am not.

I love to create new recipes and cook for my family. I love having deep conversations with my kids. I love watching shows and laughing with them.

I am really good at cooking, and creating a happy, safe, space for my kids in our home. I’m really good at giving my kids grace, and making them feel like it’s safe to be open and vulnerable with me. I’m really good at making them feel loved, while still enforcing consistent consequences.

I just don’t like to play.

Maybe part of getting older is that you care less about what others think, you become more comfortable in your own skin, and accepting who you truly are in all areas of life.

So, I encourage you to be proud of what you are really good at, and what you bring to the table as a mom. Let the rest go.

Let go of the expectations from others and yourself. Walk in the special way you were made. You are exactly what your child needs!

For articles on parenting, check out: “Tips on Raising Respectful Kids”

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What do you think?

4 Comments:
April 9, 2021

Hava,
Thank you for sharing your experience. In reading your words I feel like we are kindred spirits. I’m I’m a deep thinker, I like to build with wood, I like to cook and work hard, and also as a mom I wanted to do it all and do it all well… but I was always exhausted and overwhelmed and last thing I wanted to do was play with my kids.
Not wanting to play pretend, cards, or heaven forbid a board game made me feel guilty.
But we’re not expected to be good at everything we do. It’s obvious and yet as mom’s the “mom guilt” of not being perfect is always looming.
I will work on recognizing my “mom strengths” and stop criticizing my shortcomings.
Thanks again for sharing your perspective and experience.
-Aubrey

April 17, 2021

I love that!

April 28, 2021

Good to see your honesty and accepting who you are. I appreciate that. Funny, I don’t have kids. When I was a nanny, I did it all and loved it, like experiencing childhood again, or, even for the first time, since in my Amish life, I didn’t have all the fun stuff these kids had. I applaud you for doing a wonderful job being YOU, and enjoying it!

Blessings in being a mom!
Fannie

April 29, 2021

Appreciate that!

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