"I am a good mom."

I am a good mom.

I keep telling myself that. Over and over. Because there are so many times that I don't feel like a good one. I feel inadequate. Too young. Too goofy. Too unsure. Too irresponsible. I'm plagued with the questions. How the heck do I discipline a kid? Is he eating the right foods? Am I playing with him enough? Is he getting enough time with other people? Is he developing at the "right" pace? Is he happy? And most importantly, does he feel loved?

Deep breath.

This kind of introspection often leads me to feeling less than. It's so silly, because I am desperately trying to do all the things that feel right in my gut. But I still feel overshadowed by all the things I'm not doing. All the causes and effects based on the choices that I believe are the right ones for our family.

For instance, I chose to stay home during Everett's first year of life because I believed that was the best choice for our family. However, I often find myself critiquing all the effects of that choice. Like, is he too clingy to me? (Answer: YES). Is he developing enough social skills? Is he well adjusted? WHY WON'T HE STAY IN THE CHURCH NURSERY??? I feel like I made this great choice to stay home with him because that's what I felt in my gut was the right thing to do, but then I question all the impacts of that particular choice. I'm sure every mom deal with this kind of turmoil. Right? A rousing chorus of "Amen, sister!" would be so appreciated right now. It's so hard to know what is THE BEST CHOICE. That elusive idea of "best" can really create some inner conflict. And focusing on the dilemma that my choices create only stunts my own personal growth. I can see now that it's been holding me up.

Welcome to my brain. It's all crazy up in here. I probably need some chocolate. And a good massage.

So I've started telling myself. Out loud. "I'm a good mom."

I keep saying it until I believe it.

Because I am. I'm a good one.

No, I'm not perfect. I make a million mistakes every day. My kid falls and hurts himself and the first thing I think is, "I'm a terrible mother!" I take him to Target and skip his nap. Ah - terrible mother, party of 1! But in fact, that's not true. Because the truth is, I am a good mom.

I am a good mom.

Can you say it about yourself? Well, that might be kind of weird if you aren't a mom. You might be an architect or a teacher or a rock star (gosh, if you're a rock star and you're reading this, well, I'm a tiny bit jealous of your life, and also, I sing back up), or a dad or a grandma or a snorkeler or a hummingbird specialist or something else. But do you say it? Can you say, "I'm a good (insert choice vocation/stage of life/dream you're currently chasing)".

I think you should say it. Like, right now.

Do it guys. SAY IT OUT LOUD.

I am a good mom. I am good at being myself and I am good at what I do everyday. I'm saying this out loud as I type it.

We are all trying so hard. Look around you. Everyone, they're trying. Even the people that you deem "lazy" are conflicted, figuring themselves out and living in their mind's own nagging narrative. Spinning like little mice on the wheel. I'm tired of feeling comparative and judged and I'm sick of judging (yes, that is one of my mistakes, I admit it) because I feel less than. I'm not less than. I'm tired of acting like I am. The truth is, I am a good mom. And I'm the best mom and the best version of myself as a person when I believe that.

I'm a good mom.

You're a good mom.

You're a good whatever-you-are.

This isn't blind optimism or a mantra in reaction to a mistake-laden pattern of behavior. It's truth. This is the truth. And I bet things start to change in my crazy mind and in my own life with this change in mindset. And I'm ready for it. Aren't you?

Happiest of Mondays to you, friends. XOXO.