So I've been a mama almost 13 years. I have learned so much about who I am and who I desire (or desired) my children to become. I wanted them to be well dressed, always pristinely clean, big hair bow wearing, perfectly respectful, tri-lingual, little princesses. I remember being the mom that apologized for their toddlers behavior when they had a meltdown in the department store. I remember being the mom apologizing for the girl's hair not being freshly done every time someone saw us. I remember apologizing for what my children were wearing when what they were wearing was an expression of their creative personalities, or even for them being a little dirty from enjoying time outside. It took years...YEARS YA'LL...to not let the thoughts and opinions of others dictate my own perception of the type of mother that I am. It took hours of therapy to unpack what was really going on with my obsession with them looking a certain way and why it mattered. I was allowing my own insecurities to rip my children of a pleasant and enjoyable childhood.
I had to stop!
I needed to stop for several reasons! First off, I take excellent care of my children and would rather spend my time loving on them and providing them with an environment filled with love versus drilling them on having a crease in their skirts, hairstyles that take to long to comb and maintain (keep in mind I have four daughters with a head full of hair), and making them strip down to their undies to enjoy their bowl of spaghetti. I had to let that ish go because it was literally killing me while stripping them of their joy. Instead using our weekends to go out and about creating priceless memories, we would spend the entire weekend washing and combing hair. An extremely painful process for a mom with four girls and tender headed children. I am so thankful that my oldest took an interest in doing hair. She has helped to ease some of this stress, but ultimately it is not her job to maintain hair. We now opt for protective styles that last longer and allow us to spend more time enjoying each other. Are there still times when we leave the braids up a little longer than expected? Of course, but it usually happens because we are enjoying life!
That's the thing! Life is meant to be enjoyed. I had to stop apologizing for my girls not being perfect because the reality is... they really are! They are amazing beautiful Black girls with enough hair to share. They are full of life and healthy. They are adored by their mommy and truly the light of my life. They are my favorite people to hang out with. I had to stop placing these unrealistic expectations on them. Why? Because it places this unspoken understanding that they must look a certain way to be accepted and that is simply a false narrative. I would much rather they possess kind characteristics and be good people versus simply being the best dressed and this was the best gift I've ever given myself. The gift of FREEDOM from the judgement of others.
So today, Boss Mamas, I give this gift to you! The gift of FREEDOM! Do not allow your life and relationship with your children to be dictated by what you believe others may think of you as a mother. Own your awesomeness! You are a DOPE BLACK MAMA! Your kids are DOPE and you are rocking this whole motherhood thing!
Even if they wear the same unicorn boots and Frozen dress three times a week. Wash it and keep it moving! Even if they want to wear lavender and pink braids in their hair...let them and remind them how beautiful they are! Even if they want to wear cowboy boots and super hero costumes...let them and give them scenarios to save the world! These are your babies and you all literally only get one childhood to experience with them! Make it grand!
I hope this helps someone free themselves!