You had a bad day, but that doesn’t mean you’re a bad mum

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If your child falls and scrapes a knee, has a terrible day at school, eats too much sugar at a party, or simply has a tantrum that you cannot handle, do you end up feeling that you are a bad mum? If yes, then welcome to my world…

Guilt is a familiar friend to most of us mums.

I am no exception. I spent the first 8 years of my motherhood blaming myself for every little thing that went wrong with my little girl.

If she got a scratch while climbing a tree, I was a negligent mum. If she had a meltdown and threw a terrible tantrum in the middle of the supermarket, I was a failure as a mum. If she refused to share a toy in the playground, I was the insensitive mum. If she didn’t read every evening, I was an ineffective mum.

There was, in fact, not a single day that went by without making me feel as if I had been a bad mum. It came to a point that motherhood, at times, felt like a burden. I constantly felt that others were judging me and that I was always failing.

Deep down, I knew it wasn’t true. The Lord gave me this little one to care for. He gave me the knowledge and desire to be a good mom. It was a bad day. That doesn’t mean I’m a bad mom. A bad day, not a bad mom.

No matter how many cakes I bake, how may play dates I arrange, how many cuddles I give, how many nights I stay up with my sick babies – I always felt I was falling short; I was just not doing enough.

If my child got hurt, went hungry, cried for no reason, refused to smile and say hello on cue, or did not do what she was told to do when she was told to do it, I found myself wanting to crawl into a shell and hide from the world.

Surely motherhood was not meant to be this hard. Challenging yes, but heartbreaking, of course not.

On the next page, read about the day that changed it all for this mum.

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