*Alternatively titled, “Dear Brooke, Stop Worrying So Damn Much What Others Think of You and How Well You Live Your Life.*
Stop me if you’ve heard this one before:
930am. Phone Rings.
FRIEND/MUM/SISTER/DAD: “Hello love. I thought I might pop around and have a cuppa. Will you be home in ten minutes?”
YOU: “Of course! I’d love to see you. I’ll let the kids know you’re coming!”
(SILENTLY): Shit. We’ve had a slow start today. The kids aren’t even dressed, they’re in there watching a movie. The kitchen’s not packed up from breakfast and there’s food on the floor. The laundry’s not hung out and the play room is a mess of toys, books and crumbs. I can’t let Friend/Mum/Sister/Dad see the place like this. They’ll think I’m Not Coping. Or that I’ve Let Myself Go.
I race around, tidying, dressing the kids, shoving toys into cupboards, brushing my hair and teeth, shouting, sweeping and stressing. Then I consider quickly whipping together something to bake. (Seriously.)
All because I don’t want to look like I’m failing.
But being real, and being realistic is not failing.
By all means, be organised, be efficient, be on top of things. That’s a wonderful way to avoid many of the stresses of life and I’m all for it.
But when things don’t go to plan, CHOOSE TO BE OK WITH THAT.
Don’t perpetuate the myth that stay-at-home mums need to be domestic goddesses all the time. To be visitor-ready at any time of day. To have something freshly baked, just waiting for a knock at the door. And that anything less is a failure.
Because that world only exists online.
And comparing yourself to that fake world, is even worse than comparing yourself to other people.
I think we owe it to our Friend/Mum/Sister/Dad to be real. To be honest. To be OK with less-than-perfect. Because when we are OK with less-than-perfect, we give ourselves the room and freedom to actually LIVE our lives. Not just exist in them. Don’t you think?
When was the last time you pretended?