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The Perfect Mom Next Door

Updated on July 23, 2009
The Perfect Mom
The Perfect Mom

In the midst of all the daily challenges of motherhood, an entirely awful day can be turned around in a moment with a few words from your amazingly observant child.

"You are the best Mom in the whole world," my 8-year-old said to me one night while I was tucking her into bed. I glowed for a millisecond. She followed up that statement with "even though you're not crafty."

I smiled and thanked her. I told her that we all have different strengths, and mine happens to be, well something other than craftiness.

I knew who she was comparing me to. Yes. That other mother. A few days earlier she had said, in her sweet little way, "You are the prettiest mom I know." Pause. "Well, tied with Sabrina's mother."

It's true, Sabrina's mother is crafty, pretty and all around great. She always has a healthy snack in her pocket for a hungry child at the playground, and play-dates at her house are filled with glitter glue and fancy edge cutting scissors. And my daughter loves it.

I deserve this comparison. You see, my own mother brought this curse down on me when I was just a child, for going on about my best friend's mother. Her name was Donna and she made wonderful lunches. I loved to go to their house for lunch because it felt like a special occasion. She would even do my hair now and then. She had a box full of ribbons and I could pick my favorite color and she would give me an Alice in Wonderland look.

I often went home and told my mom about the wonders of Donna, apparently, because she still reminds me now and then. I surely never meant to make her feel inadequate. I think she just didn't appreciate the comparison. I don't appreciate it either.

Can You Be A Perfect Mom?

Who's Your Donna?

Okay. We all know we shouldn't compare ourselves to others, because it does us no good at all. I tell my daughter that all the time. Over the years I have succumbed to comparison from time to time and I bet you have too.

So, who is she? This perfect mom you see and wonder about?

Is it that socially graceful woman whose children always appear to be freshly bathed and scrubbed no matter what time day you run into them?

Is it the homeschooling mom who juggles an unfathomable load of responsibility like it was no big thing and her children that are so well behaved you stare at them with your jaw on the floor?

Is it the working mom who seems to be able to manage a high paying career and all the responsibilities of motherhood while staying in perfect shape, running the PTA, and maintaining a close personal friendship with everyone in town?

Is she the whole foods mama who tandem breastfeeds her three kids through their preschool years and still has time to make her own compost for her organic vegetable garden in the back yard? You know that her children eat an immaculate diet and their little taste buds have never come in contact with the painfully addictive flavors of an Oreo.

Then there is, of course, the mom we compare ourselves to in order to make us feel better (this is wrong too). You know her. You see her at the grocery store, looking thoroughly harassed and ten years older than she truly is. Her kids are definitely not scrubbed, they are hanging out of the shopping cart screaming and maybe they even have bed head.

I have been her, on a couple of days, and it is no picnic.

The not so perfect mom...
The not so perfect mom...
Being a perfect mom is impossible. Be a perfect you instead.
Being a perfect mom is impossible. Be a perfect you instead.

When Do We Let It Go?

My answer is now. Let it go now and never compare yourself to another woman again. My mom couldn't have been "Donna" and I'm glad she had the sense to not even try! She is so much better at being her and I love her for it.

I even tried to be a little like Donna. I got kind of bored with making every meal a grand event. And I gained weight from the whole ordeal. I do have a box of ribbons of every color in case one of my girls wants one in her hair. But they never do. I guess it was a 70's thing.

I tried for a time to be crafty, but found that I was easily frustrated by the fact that glitter glue is impossible to get off of just about anything and equally as difficult to get onto whatever you are trying to construct.

I tried hanging with the whole foods / crunchy moms and they were really cool, except when I was unsuccessful breatfeeding. Maybe if I had a note from my doctor stating that "it was not my fault and I really did try," they wouldn't have shunned me! I'm serious. I heard the whispers. I'm really not one of them, so its okay! Once, my kids actually had brownies before breakfast.

Looking at the road ahead, I have a long haul in this job as a mom. I want to enjoy it. I want to set a good example for my daughters. And the only way I can do that is to be entirely, genuinely, tied for prettiest, last in craftiness, occasionally flaky, but first in love, me.


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    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 7 years ago from Connecticut

      Thanks Katie! Comparison is a major obstacle for many of us perfectionists!

    • profile image

      Katie 7 years ago

      This is so great. I write on this all the time. We all compare ourselves don't we! Ugh great article!

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 7 years ago from Connecticut

      Thanks izettl and FirstSteps! Let's hope we can all let go of the comparisons and enjoy our children a bit more. (I'm still working on it) :)

    • FirstStepsFitness profile image

      FirstStepsFitness 7 years ago

      So many nuances raising our children rob the enjoyment of them growing up ! Rightly so we take the responsibility so heavily that we strive for perfection . Great Hub !

    • izettl profile image

      Laura Izett 7 years ago from The Great Northwest

      I do much worse comparing than this. If I could I would try to be 3 different moms that I know. Isn't that horrible, I'm not even comparing myself to one mom, but wishing I could be all 3 of them together. one is career mom, one is sporty fit mom, and one is organic mom- not all of them is "everything" but I still want to be all of them.

      Well done on this hub!!!

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 7 years ago from Connecticut

      Thanks! Yeah, I think we do.At least for awhile. I think giving up comparing is a very freeing experience! Let me know when you complete your article or leave a link so I can read it! :)

    • Sunnyglitter profile image

      Sunnyglitter 7 years ago from Cyberspace

      I was actually in the process of writing an article about how to stop comparing yourself to other moms, and I found this one. Nice job. I think we all do it from time to time.

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 7 years ago from Connecticut

      Thanks everyone for the wonderful comments. I think this hub really touches alot of moms because it is something we all struggle with, but rarely address. Thanks for commenting and sharing! I am so glad to know that I am not alone! :)

    • Rossimobis profile image

      Chibuzo Melvin Mobis 8 years ago from Biafra

      But first in love!!! that makes the perfect mom.Micky said circle in our circle,guess i am circling round the circle cos i didn't get here by accident.You have got a supersonic jet here,the way you fixed the words seem like a jet in motion and the only place to land is in the perfect port of motherland.I love my mom and though she is no more,she is incomparable,none fits into her shoes,not even Dave's mom.

    • Hope Wilbanks profile image

      Hope Wilbanks 8 years ago from Louisiana

      Neither of my children have ever done this (yet). My problem is that *I* do it to myself. Because I had a bad childhood and have never had a mother-daughter relationship with my own mother, I don't really have anything to compare my mothering skills to, so I always expect LOTS from myself and kick myself when I make mistakes.

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      ladyonthemirror 8 years ago

      I love this article, especially for working woman like me who's trying so hard to be a good mother for my family

    • wendi_w profile image

      wendi_w 8 years ago from Midwest

      The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence . I was once the other mother... it destroyed my health , and almost my sanity. My children saw a very different mom than what there friends saw I was a nit picking , nagging , never happy perfectionist, and no fun to be around unless there were other watching. I finally wised up and decided to impress myself not try to live up to the expectations that I thought others had of me.

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 8 years ago from Connecticut

      Thank you so much! I consider that a tremendous compliment coming from my favorite new hubber. :) So glad you enjoyed it!

    • myownworld profile image

      myownworld 8 years ago from uk

      what a wonderful hub! absolutely love how you write....the little jokes in between...the subtle yet sensible advice you give...and your insight into human nature....keep writing and sharing!

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 8 years ago from Connecticut

      Thank you all for the comments! I'm so glad that this look at "the perfect mom" is still entertaining and resonating with so many moms!

    • profile image

      jem060504 8 years ago

      I think if we are true to us that we can and will be the best Mom we can be!!

    • Sylestial profile image

      Sylestial 8 years ago from Lodi, California

      Hi Amy Jane!

      Thank you for this hub. It is so perfect. Keep writing, because I enjoy reading.

    • Smireles profile image

      Sandra Mireles 8 years ago from Texas

      Amy Jane, Your article was so fun and honest that I could not wait for the next paragraph. Love your children while they are small and treasure these moments. They are gone far too soon. My children are grown and I still miss the fact that they have grown up and gone away. And I always took time to treasure the moment! Keep writing. You have a gift.

    • AllMomNeeds2know profile image

      AllMomNeeds2know 8 years ago

      Amy Jane, Your article was so true. It's funny I have a daughter who just turned 7 and they are so honest. They just tell you at that moment what they think no matter what it is. By the way I'm not crafty either. I wish I could do all of these fantastic scrap booking things. Yeah, to not comparing ourselves to other moms! I do it all the time with the perfectly put together moms, how do they do it? Guess I'll just try to be the best me! Your article was so true, great advice and funny, made me smile. Thanks :)Now I must stop stalling and get back to writing my article...

    • stefanieb5125 profile image

      stefanieb5125 8 years ago from Corinth, Texas

      Your daughter is proud of your writing? Encourage this in her. Buy her a notebook and write together. Let her create stories or teach her that you write about things you know and let her do the same. My son has a notebook that he carries with him anytime we go somewhere and he writes his stories. When we get home he rewrites the stories to fix any spelling and make it neat. It serves multiple purposes- encourage creativity, we bond by our mutual like for writing, practice spelling, and practice his handwriting. Those rewritten stories then get put in a binder for him to keep and read when he gets older. If she's not old enough to write just yet, let her draw her stories and you can help write short, simple captions that she comes up with. Then she can read her story after you tie them with ribbons to make books. Look! Crafty Mom!You don't have to be a glitter glue mom to be crafty and you can find common ground that will hold more value for her entire life than any glitter project done today will hold 5 years from now in the bottom of a box in the attic. Just be yourself and encourage activities that you enjoy as "level ground" to make you the best mom in the world hands down. :)

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 8 years ago from Connecticut

      Thank you Maggs224! I'm so glad you enjoyed this. :)

      Hi Mighty Mom - I think you are right, it is human nature to compare and as my kids get older I'm sure the way they compare me (and the whole family) to others will change. Eventually, I think we all realize that every family is screwed up in some way. :) My daughter is now very proud of my writing and gets very excited with me over new writing jobs!

      Hi Feline Prophet - I may be just a little crafty in that sense...:)

    • profile image

      Feline Prophet 8 years ago

      Amy Jane, crafty has another meaning...and you don't sound devious in the least! I'm sure your girls love you for that! :)

    • Mighty Mom profile image

      Susan Reid 8 years ago from Where Left is Right, CA

      It took me many, many years to appreciate my mother's talents, as she was not the traditional "crafty" mom, either. But in her eulogy I made sure to warn God that Lee did the NY Times crossword puzzle every day in ink, and "she's on her way up and she's bringing her pen."

      I suspect it is human nature for kids to compare their own families with the families of their friends. Next time your daughter mentions Sabrina, you could, in all honesty, tell her: "Well, that's very nice, dear. But Sabrina doesn't have a Hub Score of 98 or 1262 fans." I know you won't, but just making a point here:-).

      Great hub. I thank Ms. Maggs224 for turning me onto it. MM

    • maggs224 profile image

      maggs224 8 years ago from Sunny Spain

      What an absolutely fabulous hub I enjoyed every moment of it, it took me right back to when my own two were babies. Well observed and written and so entertaining. You have a new fan

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 8 years ago from Connecticut

      Hi Lovelymama! Thank you so much! No one is perfect but somewhere inside we seem to think that someone - out there - somewhere - has it all together. I'm glad you enjoyed this. Please do share it with anyone who would enjoy it. :)

    • lovelymama profile image

      lovelymama 8 years ago

      wow... I never really thought of it this way... I always just hope I am a good enough mom to bring up a decent young lady... I do compare myself to other moms though-my Donna is my mother in law. I try not to think about perfection because no one is perfect as much as we try to be. We all have our opinions about other moms but when it comes right down to it all of these opinions are just based on our own insecurities about parenting. I love that you made me think about this though because it really does play a part in our everyday lives. I would like to refer your hub if this is ok with you.

    • pahko profile image

      pahko 9 years ago from The Voices In My Head

      After recent advances in medical technology, I was able to become a mom.

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 9 years ago from Connecticut

      Thank you Joy! I think that I am getting better also, and then I catch myself comparing again. :) I hope to get over this habit eventually! Thanks for reading. :)

    • Joy M profile image

      Joy M 9 years ago from Sumner, Washington

      I loved your hub. This is something we as women tell ourselves all the time--don't compare. And yet we all still do it.

      I think I'm getting better at not comparing as I get older, but maybe that's just wishful thinking. :)

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 9 years ago from Connecticut

      Thanks so much Raquela! That is one cute baby in your avatar. :)

    • raquela profile image

      raquela 9 years ago from California

      Wow, such great advice and your hubs are so entertaining and fun to read.

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 9 years ago from Connecticut

      Thank you Desert Blondie! I am glad you finally got to read this one. I loved oyur story, lol! I am always interested in hearing about how our childhood experiences shape who we become as parents. I have only recently taken on some of the grocery shopping myself. My husband mostly handles it because he knows how much I hate going with the kids. I get so distracted by their behavior that I forget to get half of what we need anyway!

    • desert blondie profile image

      desert blondie 9 years ago from Palm trees, swimming pools, lots of sand, lots of sunscreen

      Just found this hub...still reading all these hubs written by my favorite hubbers! As you already know from ALL the other comments..this one's great. I was so phobic about grocery store "scenes" that I never took my kids until they were about 8 years old!!! I would go late at night after they were in bed asleep and my hubby would be calmly settled in front of TV....a nicely quiet time for strolling the aisles. (My little sister was tremendously talented at having mother, like all mothers of tantrum throwing children did NOT know what to do! As the big sister, I just wanted to NOT BE PART of any of it...That's where my phobia started...probably too much info....I tend to ramble. Great hub!

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 9 years ago from Connecticut

      Hi pastorreachout, I didn't even think of the Daddy comparison! You are so right, that is a difficult one for me as well. My husband is cerainly known as the "fun one" and one of my girls prefers his cooking to mine! I think over time I have just gotten used to that comparison, and I think it was the same in my family growing up. I think it is toughest on the stay at homemom, who has to enforce all the rules daily - then dad comes home and it is all fun and games!

      Thanks for reading and adding this perspective. :)

    • pastorreachout profile image

      pastorreachout 9 years ago

      What is really difficult to deal with keeping all feelings in perspective, when your children compare me the Dad to their Mom. "Dad you always joke and laugh with us. Dad your funny, Mom's not" " Dad, you dont have a memory like moms."

      "Dad, you dont listen very good! Daddy we like you you take us out to eat all the time." (It's because I dont cook, Mom does)

      Anyway my kids are grown now but I remember the comparisons.

      I will look forward to reading more of your hubs, Gives me a memory trip and tmy three girls said my memory wasn't good!

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 9 years ago from Connecticut

      Hi Laura, I agree -the older I get, the deeper my appreciation for my own mom gets! I understand her in a completely different way now that I am a mother of three too. Thanks for reading and commenting! :)

    • Laura Marie profile image

      Laura Marie 9 years ago from UK

      This is a great hub, thanks. It is funny when we are younger how we always think other people's mums are great, but when we get older we realise that our own mum is the best of all.

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 9 years ago from Connecticut

      Thanks for reading, tbelgard. I am so glad you enjoyed it! Wanting to pass on a feeling of self-love to your child is a wonderful goal and gift to him. I think we need to be a little easier on ourselves in general, especially on the bad days. Beating ourselves up over the daily errors doesn't help us to be "better" the next day. Thanks for commenting! :)

    • tbelgard profile image

      tbelgard 9 years ago from The rainy but beautiful Pacific Northwest

      Great article Amy! While reading though, I must admit I was already comparing myself to other moms I know. We all know a super and a not-so

      -supermom who can make us feel better or worse about our own mothering abilities. At nearly 15 months, my son is still in orbit around me, but I know that will change soon. When comparing myself to other moms, I know there are models of perfection out there (just like beauty) and I know that I am not perfect. I do my best, I accept myself that way and hope that i will pass on that feeling of self-love to my child. I look forward to reading more of your stuff!

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 9 years ago from Connecticut

      Thank you, Shalyce. I think you are right, we all go through this at some point during motherhood. Thanks for reading!

    • profile image

      Shalyce 9 years ago

      Good and so true. This is a very relatable article I think for almost all moms out there.

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 9 years ago from Connecticut

      Thank you so much, ldsNana for your comment. I agree that knowing "who" you are is a tremendous blessing. I just wish i had figured it out sooner! :) While I do fall into the comparison trap from time to time, I catch myelf now. It is so true, what you said, that children can see your weaknesses (and strengths). My oldest daughter tells me flat out, and my younger one imitates me. She is my little mirror.

      Thank you again for adding your very positive advice - it is always welcome here!

    • LdsNana-AskMormon profile image

      Kathryn Skaggs 9 years ago from Southern California

      amy jane -

      I am so glad I finally got around to reading this hub that I know is so very personal to you. I can't help but think of the word vulnerable as I consider what you have shared with your readers here.

      But the fact is, that you have simply described every woman at one time or another... and her feelings of inadequacy.

      The blessing, is that we discover this truth, especially when we are willing to talk about it:-)

      The reality that we compare ourselves against those things that are completely different than who we are - really is just a way to recognize, that we do see the gifts and talents in others and appreciate those differences.

      The problems start when we don't see ourselves - our truth - and how simply wonderful we are as individual women. Others usually do!

      Thus, we fall into the comparison trap thinking one must be better than the other? Crazy, huh?

      We are who we are - and we can be the best at it - more so than anyone else! But learning from others and adding to our self is also important. We can share as women our wonderful talents, by teaching or just being.

      We are always looking at another woman's "package", right? How she does "it". How many of her type are there really? Not many, because usually "she" is perpetuating a stereotype and will end up crazy in the end! LOL

      Enjoy being you and focusing on your strengths. Everyone has both weakness and strength. Build on where your power lies, and that is in the fact that you love those within your sphere like nobody else.

      No one can even begin to compete with that power! Here is a little secret - what you see in yourself as weakness, so will your children - no hiding it. But if you work together on it, you will all be strengthened in your oneness. They will come to truly see you as mother and teacher and ultimately mentor - theirs!

      It is a miracle!



    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 9 years ago from Connecticut

      Thanks Abhinaya, motherhood presents constant challenges and I think we all must wonder at some point how we are doing compared to other moms. We are all different, of course, and hopefully we won't get caught up in the comparison for too long. It can really be damaging to a mom's self esteem. Thanks for reading :)

    • profile image

      Abhinaya 9 years ago

      Sounds like we share the same feelings Amy.No one is perfect...and that I realized when my ten year old kept telling me what was happenning in his friend's homes.I really thought I was not good at all until I stumbled upon an article which said you are what you are.As a mom you care for your children and no need to feel guilty even if you scold your kids when you think they are wrong.Great hub!

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 9 years ago from Connecticut

      Thanks Marisue. I have experienced that too. Sometimes my girls were perceive things in a completely different way than intended. It makes things even more difficult! I guess we all do that, though :) If we keep loving them, and treating them with respect and kindness as a rule, much of that will hopefully be avoided!

    • marisuewrites profile image

      marisuewrites 9 years ago from USA

      I'm sure you are doing much better than you think! Kids forget - but I got a shock the other day. My oldest son thought we punished him over something and we had not remembered it that way at all...sometimes it's good to ask them some questions about how they remember things and not assume they think like we do. I'm still shocked LOL the conversation came up over dinner...was a small thing but he had a completely different memory of it. eeek. and I thought I was great. ahahhaha

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 9 years ago from Connecticut

      Marisue, thank you for your insightful comments. I agree, we need to give ourselves a break sometimes. I needed to remember that today, so I appreciate you bringing it to my attention! I still forget sometimes, and am very harsh on myself. i don't think I am alone on that :) It is quite a journey, motherhood...

    • marisuewrites profile image

      marisuewrites 9 years ago from USA

      we learn from our moms, whether good or bad...and we can be better -- improving all down the line. we are all a mixture. If the kids still hang around - after they're grown, then we did all right.

    • marisuewrites profile image

      marisuewrites 9 years ago from USA

      The perfect mom is one who the kids can find when they need her, is slightly annoying when they don't, who loves them when they're unloveable, knows how to open a can, knows how to defend against the world, fights all kinds of monsters, shows up dirty once in a while; allows the kids to show up dirty once in a while, has her own life part of the time, disciplines with love and understanding, forgives and forgets to discipline once in a while, always teaches, smiles most of the time, frowns once in a while, understands the value in being perfectly imperfect some of the time, tries - tries - tries, all of the time...

      ok you get the drift. YOU'RE the perfect mom.

      nice HUB, all of us MOM's need to give ourselves a break...if the kids are loving you and loving others - you must be doing something right and I don't think it's always based on the dishes being done on time...=)

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 9 years ago from Connecticut

      Thanks so much, Barb! You remind me of my mom:) She was not the baking / crafty type either, but she was a wonderful example for us in many other ways. The relationship is the most important thing, and she is still my best friend!

    • Minnie's Mom profile image

      Minnie's Mom 9 years ago from Seattle, WA

      I can relate to "not" being a Donna. My little daughter is 33 yrs. old now and has forgotten the birthday parties without the homemade cake, Halloween outfits from the drug store, reading bedtime stories abbreviated -- skipping 5-6 pages so I can go to sleep sooner. She is my best friend and she loves me for who I am. Love your hubs ; ) Barb

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 9 years ago from Connecticut

      Thanks so much for reading and commenting, ripplemaker!

    • ripplemaker profile image

      Michelle Simtoco 9 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

      I couldn't help but post a comment (even though I am not a mom) but I could relate since I remember the times I wish my mom was somebody else! (guilty) LOL But that's the best we can do...accept and love our unique selves! Way to go!

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 9 years ago from Connecticut

      I agree! I changed my mind when I grew up a bit, too. Thanks for reading:)

    • MommyMandy profile image

      MommyMandy 9 years ago from The South

      So real! We often aren't the coolest in our kids books, but hey, they will change their mind eventually....I did.

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 10 years ago from Connecticut

      I agree, Crystalkay, with all of your comment! Thanks for reading and commenting :)

    • crystalkay profile image

      crystalkay 10 years ago from Sunny Southern California

      Great hub...we all find our own version of personal perfection ((usually far from ideal perfection))! Hey if the babes are loved, fed, and clean call it a success! Supporting each other in our differences is so important.

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 10 years ago from Connecticut

      Thank you so much, Erinn! I think a lot of women can relate to these feelings. I am so glad you enjoyed it! :)

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 10 years ago from Connecticut

      Hi Ann, I think that it is a huge compliment for your son's friends to hang out at your house! You must be the cool mom :) Thanks for reading!

    • Erinn Soule profile image

      Erinn Soule 10 years ago from Los Angeles

      You are BRILLIANT Amy! It reminds me of the pice I wrote on the wives next door...haha! I really needed to read this today, it has seriously been ONE OF THOSE DAYS! Thank you for being so wonderfully descriptive!

    • nyfamily5 profile image

      nyfamily5 10 years ago

      This is so true. The good and bad go hand in hand. I have two teenage boys and all their friends always end up at my home. I think it is because I feed them, oh and can boys eat.

      I've been compared to their parents, and I am not the organized, crafty, type of mom. I'm just myself and that's the important thing. We all bring something to the table as parents with different syles.

      Great Hub


    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 10 years ago from Connecticut

      Thanks, Peter! She really is cool, and pretty and very nice :)

    • Peter M. Lopez profile image

      Peter M. Lopez 10 years ago from Sweetwater, TX

      Wow, Sabrina's mom must be really cool. Not as cool as amy jane, though, I'm sure.

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 10 years ago from Connecticut

      Elleissa, thank you for the compliment! Our bond with our children -building and maintaining - is certainly the priority. I'm so glad you enjoyed my hub!

      Thanks Alexis - My girls are growing up too fast! I wish I could slow them down. My oldest is really my biggest fan - most of the time.

      Hi Crystal, I have that same patience issue! I was, at one time, the most patient person on earth. Like you said, three kids can really take it out of you! And Christmas vactation was rough here too. I am currently trying to figure out what to do about summer vacation!

      StephHicks68, I am that "mom you don't want to be" all to often. The kids know when you are giving your best, even if things seem to be totally out of control.

      Thanks for the comment BloggerMom - your time will come!

      Zsuzsy Bee, -you made me laugh - Snooty-bags! You weren't gloating, you were just sharing that your baby is in college, so that's totally, completely justified!

      Thanks for commenting :)

    • Zsuzsy Bee profile image

      Zsuzsy Bee 10 years ago from Ontario/Canada

      Amy Jane! A perfect HUB! You're we all have our Donna's mine was called (in my mind) "Snooty-bags" She caused me quite a few green with envy moments. You see she was not divorced like me, she was the perfect stay at home Mom...I know its not nice to gloat but my last Baby is attending college now and none of hers have. I talked to Snooty-bags last week and she sounded envious of my childrens success. I guess we're even now.

      loved your great HUB regards Zsuzsy

    • Blogger Mom profile image

      Blogger Mom 10 years ago from Northeast, US

      Your Hub makes me appreciate that my three kids are still too young to realize that not all mommies are made the same! =) But, I guess it's just around the corner. I, too, was not born with the craft gene. Thanks for the good read!

    • stephhicks68 profile image

      Stephanie Hicks 10 years ago from Bend, Oregon

      Oh my, oh my! Thanks for a great Hub, Amy Jane. Funny, yet poignant and true! With four young kids, shopping at the grocery store just about always turns out like the "Mom you don't want to be...." I keep trying to tell myself, I'm doing the best I can. And that's good enough for my little blessings. :-) Steph

    • CrystalSingleton profile image

      CrystalSingleton 10 years ago from HBeach,Ca

      All moms are different. I am sure you excel in other motherly talents she doesn't posses. After all no one is perfect. I am mother of 3 myself. Even though I can run short on patience my kids never hesistate to enjoy all the time I spend with them. They love the memories. Other moms told me my kids are so lucky. That's not what some would say when they hear me losing my patience with them at the store or dying for christmas vacation to end so I can send them back to school. Ha-ha. It's all good though. The important thing is my kids know they are loveed and they love me back. That's the coolest thing about young kids is they don't judge you. You are always mom to them and that's all that matters.

    • Alexis Froehlich profile image

      Alexis Froehlich 10 years ago

      Loved your article Amy Jane! Makes me wonder how all the moms (and dads) feel when their children are with the "other" stepmom or stepdad.

      I have no doubt you are a wonderful mother, and as your daughter sees you comfortable being who you are, she'll do the same thing as she grows older and becomes a young woman (I know, I know, don't rush it) :) And that is the best compliment ever !

    • elleissa profile image

      elleissa 10 years ago from California

      Excellent article! I loved it from beginning to end. Seriously. Mothers need to read this article and probably print it off and hang it in an obvious place as a constant reminder that Motherhood is about building your own unique bond with your child built on your own talents and not another mom's talent. Love it, especially loved your closing statement, "And the only way I can do that is to be entirely, genuinely, tied for prettiest, last in craftiness, occasionally flaky, but first in love, me."

    • amy jane profile image

      amy jane 10 years ago from Connecticut

      Hi everyone -thanks so much for the great comments! Doghouse -I am dreading the teen years already! I think letting go of what we think we should be, according to some distorted standard, is a big step.

      I have heard rumors that it gets easier to do as you get older...

    • Just Toyia profile image

      Just Toyia 10 years ago from Tennessee

      I loved that you through the line in there about being a non-breast-feeding Mom. You know that one is close to my heart!

    • profile image

      Alison Morgan 10 years ago

      Hey, this is so true! I always wanted my mom to be the "cool mom" who let her kids watch grown up TV shows and listen to cool music on the radio . . . and I'm sure I'll find out who my girls want me to be like in the next couple years. NOT looking forward to it!

    • C-Lee profile image

      C-Lee 10 years ago

      Hi Amy Jane,

      I think once your daughter can read this, she'll have a different appreciation for crafty! I loved your tone: constantly tempting the readers to compare while telling them not to. Well written and fun!

    • caspar profile image

      caspar 10 years ago from UK

      Wise words - I try to focus on being "good enough".

    • About-The-Home profile image

      About-The-Home 10 years ago

      Remember, you're not just a mom, you're a person.

      ...but I'm a dad and I ache to ask my daughters now all grown up how I did as a dad, but I don't do that.

    • In The Doghouse profile image

      In The Doghouse 10 years ago from California

      amy jane

      Just wait until they hit their teens!! lol Yep, comparing is a bad pit that most of us fall into. Unfortunately, we always compare somebody elses best with our worst. In fact, it is just as effective as comparing apples to oranges. I think for me, when I finally stopped worrying about being the perfect mom, and just tried to be the best mom I could, I truly became just that, the best I could. Great HUB.