There are articles about Pinterest making mothers feel depressed and inadequate and Instagram portraying unrealistic rosy versions of life and I’m guilty as charged. Guilty not just of putting up picture-perfect artistically-filtered humorously-captioned photographs of my kids but guilty also of being on the receiving end, where looking at pictures of other families/ holidays/ projects on various social media sites make me feel like I need to play catch-up.
So I present a not-so-pretty glimpse into my life with the kids. It’s Mother’s Day and I’m expecting to feel special, to be showered with love and appreciation, to be given adorable handmade cards scrawled in childish handwriting, and to have beautiful photos taken with my colour-coordinated kids. Did any of that happen?
Not really. I still had to run after the kids, take care of all their usual needs and carry out all my motherly duties. At one point of time, I was the only one watching the kids as they ran and played outside, while Adrian and my in-laws were still sitting in the restaurant relaxing after lunch. Then Anya refused to smile for a family photo and made silly excuses about her arm hurting. I was fuming and I never felt so unappreciated in my life. All I wanted was a decent photo and I couldn’t even get that.
To top it off, her class teachers forgot to get the kids to make a mother’s day card in school and she only brought one home the day after Mother’s Day. By the time I got to see it in the evening, however, she had scribbled all over it with a ballpoint pen. Nice. I complained bitterly to Adrian about his children taking me for granted and he reminded me about the other card that Anya had made for me with his help. She wanted the card to be perfect and made three different cards before finally deciding that one was good enough to give to me.
My life as a mother is far from flawless and my kids are as imperfect as they come. I know sometimes I make it seem otherwise. But Mother’s Day was such a reality check for me to stop thinking about composing Kodak moments to capture and present to the rest of the world, and to really focus on living life in the moment with my family whom I love dearly and fiercely with all its imperfections.