Grace Over Guilt

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Recently, I caught myself being super judgmental.  I actually told an exhausted new mama of two that her children deserved better.  I told her she wasn’t doing enough.  Her house wasn’t clean enough.  I even looked her straight in the eye and told her the baby weight wasn’t coming off quickly enough.

When I listen to myself, I am appalled and embarrassed to think that I would shame a mother in this way.  But the good news is – I didn’t.   I never said any of these things out loud, and I honestly haven’t even thought them about another mother.

The bad news is, I am guilty of saying all of these things to myself.

Why is it that I easily extend grace, understanding and compassion to other mothers, but don’t offer myself the same courtesy?  Since coming to this realization, I have stopped myself from negative self talk more times than I care to admit. I can easily shut it down when I think about what I would say if I were speaking to a friend instead of myself.  If a mama friend was doing her best in caring for her children, but struggling, I would remind her of her big love for her children.  I would remind her that motherhood is hard, but that when it comes to mothering her kids- she is the absolute best woman for the job. I would tell her she was enough, and I would believe it.

Of course I hope we all speak in kindness to each other, but equally important is how we speak to ourselves. There are some days when the only adult voice I hear is my own.  Isn’t it better for everyone if that voice is kind?  Wouldn’t the world be a little bit sweeter if we all were a little more gentle, not just with others, but with ourselves?  In the -almost- words of Michael Jackson,  I’m starting with the mom in the mirror, and I’m asking her to change her ways.  (You can go ahead and sing that last part.)  From now on, my motto is “Grace over guilt”.  Not just for you, but for me.  Because both of us need it.

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Becky Walker
I fell in love with my husband, Dustin, when I was a wide eyed 15 year old. I have been a mostly loving wife since June 5, 2010, and a mom since February 16, 2012. I live right by Tinker AFB, and I have three little ones- Lyla, 6, Karrick, 2, and our bonus baby Juliet, almost 1 year old! Along with serving as Community Engagement Manager for OKCMB, I work part time from the closet under our stairs teaching English to Chinese students early in the morning! The most relaxing part of my day is when I drink my whole cup of coffee -HOT- while it’s still dark, and the rest of my house is still and quiet. During the day, the kids and I are out and about, exploring the city and avoiding the laundry. I do my very best to run a happy and healthy household for my husband and the little people God has entrusted to me.

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