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It’s not easy for me to admit this, but sometimes I am a judgmental mom.
I don’t mean to be, and usually at first, I’m completely unaware that I’m doing it. But, after observing these judgmental thoughts towards other moms for quite sometime, I couldn’t help but wonder – why I am having them in the first place? Why is my first instinct to compare and judge?
After some deep introspection, I realized that the reason I am judgmental towards other mothers in particular, is because I’m judgmental towards myself as a mom.
It’s helped me to be kinder towards myself and to remember that I’m always – just like every other mom – doing the best I can with what I have in the moment.
So many times since having my daughter, I’ve felt like I wasn’t a good parent. I’ve beat myself up for spending too much time on the computer or phone, instead of quality time with her. I’ve felt stupid when I show up to a playdate without snacks or toys, and have to ask the other overly prepared moms if my daughter could share with their kids. I’ve felt ashamed – ashamed that sometimes I feel like I’m letting my daughter down by not always “getting it right” as a mom.
Armed with this new realization, I decided I wanted to change this judgmental thought process that I was having towards other moms and myself.
So I started practicing a technique that I call “motherhood meditation in real life.” It’s a simple practice that you can do anywhere, that allows you to let go of all of the negative thoughts you may be having in your head toward yourself and others.
It goes like this:
Whenever I see a mother at the park, and have a negative thought about her, I don’t get upset with myself for having it. I then choose to just notice it – seeing if there’s anything around the thought that could be connected to how I’m feeling about myself as a mother.
After observing and reflecting for a bit I begin to replace the thought with something positive. Perhaps it’s how she looks at her child, or something I like about how she’s dressed. I even give myself bonus points if I have the courage to walk up to her and say them out loud – which has lead to some lovely friendships I would have never had.
Practicing this technique has allowed me to connect with other mother’s with openness and relatability like never before. It’s helped me to be kinder towards myself and to remember that I’m always – just like every other mom – doing the best I can with what I have in the moment.
I am not perfect and I don’t think that I am the best mom of all time, but I am getting better at loving myself every day, and being able to share that love with my daughter and other moms that I meet has been truly incredible.
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