Every once in a while I think about life in the big city. It’s not often, because I live in my own little bubble of fantasy world, so it generally happens like a ton of bricks smacking me in the face.
I’m not the only one who notices that we’re running ourselves ragged, am I? The city out-paces me on a regular basis, and sometimes it makes me dizzy. I often wonder, when I’m hit with that sack of bricks, why we choose to live this way. What are we sacrificing, as families, to have a full schedule? Why is having a full schedule important?
I’m in generally good health now, so I have more energy than I used to, but looking at other people’s schedules is still exhausting. Kindergarten, gymnastics, library time, picnic at the park, art class, trip to the zoo, whathaveyou. I can do one of those things a day and I know of people who frequently do all of them and more. I admire those people, but I know I wouldn’t be happy living like that.
The crux is that sometimes it feels like we’re expected to do all the things. There’s a certain amount of pressure to be a “good mom” by signing your kid up for all sorts of activities. I challenge that idea. Not only because I’m somewhat lazy, and I often don’t even have time to keep the house clean, but because we’re missing out on a lot by moving so fast. Especially if you’re moving fast because, well, everyone else is and you don’t want to be labelled a “bad mom”.
Here’s the thing: by and large, “good moms” and “bad moms” don’t exist (excluding abuse and neglect). We’re all just moms trying to do the best we can for our children. All of the choices offered to us as parents include the worry and fear of screwing something up. Vaccinate or not? Formula or breastfeed? Public school or homeschool? Organic or conventional? The list goes on. The stakes are high: you’re raising a person and your choices will affect them for the rest of their lives.
I say that, at least sometimes, we should take a step back from the bustle of the big city and just let kids be kids. And there’s no harm in allowing ourselves to enjoy our children: Suzy or Johnny won’t be harmed if we all just slow down and take the time to appreciate a lazy day (or week).
I guess all of this rambling is to say: don’t feel guilty for doing nothing with your kids all day. Don’t let anyone make you feel like you’re a “bad mom” if you skip the chores every so often: the mess can wait (and it will gladly do so).
On a final note, here is a video that I think of fairly often. Fair warning: there is one F-bomb in it so it is not safe for kids.