Today I got my daughter ready and off to school, poured myself a cup of coffee, and scrolled through my Facebook. It a part of my routine. Each and every morning I take a moment to look through my social media pages; most days it’s just something I do to procrastinate getting out of my warm bed, others it’s to see what everyone has been up to, and some days it’s to compare my life to everyone and everything I see. It’s hard to shake that unrelenting fear of being lapped in the race of parenting. It happens more often that not. I log into Facebook or Instagram and I’m overwhelmed with photographs, statuses, and videos from women who are quick to share and brag about all their successes.
You can always count on that mom who is willing to let everyone know the achievements of her children. She shares photos of the many milestones her baby has hit early, and videos of her baby reading by the age of 2 or speaking a second language and sign-language by 3. She posts about her child getting accepted in the school for gifted children. She shares her perfect family photos regularly, and she is quick to put her opinions out there when it comes to parenting.
You will also find posts from the beautiful wife who loves to show her perfectly decorated new home, the lunches she packs for her hubby every day along with a love note written in perfectly perfect handwriting. She will share the many romantic evenings they have in front of their fireplace eating the Pinterest worthy dinner she made and paired with a good wine. She tells you how lucky she is to be loved so profoundly by this amazing man who helps around the house, has an amazing job, and regularly dotes on her.
And of course you will see the beautiful young woman who post her sexy yet fashionable selfie each and every day. She is perfectly styled and manicured, her skin and hair is flawless, her makeup looks as if it was done by professionals, and she always has the most humbling and catchy caption to go with her maybe not so humbling photo. She always posts about all the gifts and flowers and jewelry she receives from her boyfriend or husband, all the accomplishments she has had in her career. She shares videos of all the exotic places she travels, all the bucket-list worthy adventures she’s had, all of the goodies she has hauled on her shopping spree, and of course all the fun she is having every weekend.
With all that perfection how can one woman keep up? We need to remember that social media is a projection of the best parts of our lives, and everything you see is selective. What your seeing is a strategically chosen post, altered with a filter, and topped off with an unoriginal quote or caption found on Google or Pinterest. This isn’t what these platforms were created for, but what they have evolved to become.
This is something that has sat with me for a while. Not only is this distorted reality constantly projected onto myself, my family, my friends, my husband, and my children it also comes along with the stress and anxiety of never being able to achieve this unattainable nonexistent perfection. Thanks to social media, you don’t have to go far to be bombarded with information about your life, marriage, home, and children. It is all right there in the open for people to tell you how to eat, parent, decorate, and live, creating that “everyone else is doing better than me” mentality.
As a human being it’s hard watch people fall victim to this trap. I don’t want that for myself, or my family. This is the reason why I chose to call my blog Messy Momma. It’s because I want to start a movement.
I want women and parents to support one another on this journey; I want to embrace the raw imperfections that come along with life. A place where we find beauty in what may sometimes feel like chaos. These moments are temporary and character building. Why should we shame one another for having them, when in fact, they should be celebrated.
Parenting is hard, and there is no one right way to raise your children. There will always be someone there to tell you what your doing wrong, and rarely will someone stand up and acknowledge what your doing right. In today’s world social media is EVERYTHING. It’s a glossy scrapbook where we can share our perfectly selected and edited successes. And in many ways it is taking us away from our children, putting them on pause, and putting ourselves out there for so many to judge, ridicule, and scrutinize! (It shouldn’t be that way, but the unfortunate truth is that it is) I know so many of us do truly use social media platforms to keep in touch with friends and family. To share moments with them and keep up with what is going on in their lives. But each and every one of us has fallen into the trap that social media also creates, and that trap comes in many forms; sometimes it’s a competition, sometimes it’s and illusion distorting the reality of motherhood, marriage, and parenting, sometimes it comes in the form of “othermothering” and bullying, but you can bet it is always changing it’s identity and victim after victim that negativity grows stronger.
Now, I’m not saying social medial is all bad. It does allow us to communicate with friends and family who we may not get to see often, it has opened the door to so much information, and it allows us to find or create communities that do such wonderful things. And that is what I want to do here. I want not only a judgement free space, but a place to embrace the Messy Momma Momens that naturally come along with parenting. I hope we can share these moments with one another, build each other up and help one another out, laugh, TRULY laugh and embrace those Messy Moments, and learn to cherish them, because it is a part of our journey with our children. And each and every moment with them is worth celebrating!
My reason for existing is my children, and I want to teach them the power of being themselves, truly being the honest, raw, transparent version of themselves. And the only way I can do that is leading by example and truly being the honest, raw, transparent version of myself; without worry or anxiety of judgement and scrutiny witch is something I struggle with each and every day. As people we seek acceptance, as a woman and wife we strive for perfection, and as a parent raising kind, smart, and successful children is everything.
Between Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest I have had days where I have driven myself mad trying to keep up with the distorted version of what our home, marriage, and children should look like. It has caused me to pause real moments in our lives to recreate or redirect them to be better or force them to be a picture perfect moment. And in doing so I have missed out on that natural parent to child, husband to wife, or friend and family moment.
As a young woman and parent I struggled with seeking approval and acceptance. I went back and fourth doing thing that people told me I should be doing as a woman, wife, homemaker, and parent. Things that didn’t come naturally or work for our family. I had foggy goggles on, and was blinded by the distorted reality our generation faces on social media and in every day life. It took some maturity and self love to accept my true reality and that is; sometimes life is a mess, but that doesn’t make it any less of a life. In fact, sometimes those messes are the moments we will remember or regret depending on how we handle them. So I have chosen to start a community and movement that embraces those #messymommamoments where we can laugh and actually enjoy them. Where we can build each other up, and successfully power though those moments! Where we can learn about ourselves as people, as parents, as friends. We can find what works for us and what doesn’t. Where we can share our tips and tricks for success. I want to have fun and share the things I enjoy, and the things that make life a little easier. Because I love my Messy Momma Life, and you should too!