By Debbie Wilkins

~ Today I have broken up 18 fights and it’s barely noon on a Saturday.
~ Breakfast was met with an “Is this it?!” and lunch had the response of “Yuck, I don’t want this.”
~ My house looks like I was robbed.
~ Silence is a sound I miss almost as much as sleep.
~ Violence seems to be the norm around here.
~ Toilets are never flushed.
~ I have 2 holes in walls of my home.  Both occurred by “not me.”
~ Every picture frame hangs unevenly from my kids literally shaking the house as they jump on furniture.

Can I get an amen?!

I keep repeating to myself as I rock in a dark corner clutching a bottle of whiskey (Okay, I’m exaggerating.  It’s vodka.), “One day they’ll be functional contributors to society.”   But it won’t be today.  And it won’t be tomorrow.

Am I doing this all wrong?  Are they all pre-destined to horizontal conversations with a therapist?

I’m a widow.  And I’m only 36.  Being a widowed mother is just indescribable.  How can I be a mom AND a dad?  Am I feminizing these boys?  How can I learn to be spontaneous and love camping and change the oil in the car?  Are they destined to be criminals without a man in the house?

CAN YOU RELATE?  Don’t you wish God would give you quarterly progress reports?  An occasional glimpse into the future?

Here’s my checklist for you to test how you’re doing in the MOM department.  Get your #2 pencil ready.

1.  Are you keeping your children alive daily?
2.  Are you feeding your children daily?
3.  Are your kids bathing at least once a week?
4.  Are you tired a lot due to mothering demands?
5.  Are you doing the best you can as a mom?

Time’s up.  If you answered “yes” to the above, you are officially an AWESOME mom!  Congratulations!

Moms are famous for carrying the weight of the world on their shoulders (What if my daughter becomes a teen mom?  What if my son flunks out of high school?  What if she marries the wrong guy?  What if he starts street racing his car?) instead of surrendering it to Jesus.  You see, God made those kids and loves them and wants great things for them.  Bad things may happen.  But regardless, God can be all over it.  Loosen your grip and cut the cord.  You cannot hold their hand through every trial of life.

Moms also juggle too much (Sure, I would love nothing more than to be Room Mom, PTA President, and bake brownies for the Girl Scout troop).  Why?  Is it because we are bored?  Too much time on our hands?  All that love bursting through the seams of our heart?  Maybe.  Could it also be, now don’t get mad, some kind of issue with PRIDE?    You don’t want to feel incapable or unloving or judged or gossiped about, so another plate is now forced to spin in our lives.  Worrying about others’ opinions is hard to dismiss, I get that.  However, nowhere in the Bible does it say, “Focus on what others will think and you will be a good person.”

I used to be an elementary school teacher.  So here’s your assignment:

1.  Relax.  Your kids will most likely turn out fine.
2.  Relax.  Instead of volunteering to run the Car Wash next Saturday, sit in your pajamas drinking coffee.
3.  Relax.  Talk to Jesus about your concerns and ask Him to continually take care of them according to His will.
4.  Relax.  There’s no Mother of The Decade Contest.  You’ve already won.
5.  Relax.  Look the other way when you see ink-stained carpets, siblings whining, and a sink full of dishes.

I’m rooting for you.  Your struggles are similar to every other mama’s struggles.  Just make it through today.  Then make it through tomorrow.  Be kind to yourself.

Back to my corner I go….

Debbie is one of the founders of Momsanity, a community of moms striving to achieve balance through physical, emotional and spiritual wellness. Visit their web site for more articles like this!