This morning I made pancakes for my children.
For some moms, this could be an every day statement. No big deal. For me, it feels like a major victory. It’s probably been a year since I made my children a hot breakfast. Looking at the positive, between their father and me, we’re able to provide food daily for our children, a sign of abundance that far surpasses what most in this world ever experience. But I was born into a First World life. As a parent and recovering perfectionist, I have gradually let go of many of the unrealistic expectations I had for myself before I had children, especially in the last two and half years I’ve spent as a single working mother. Some unknown but very wise individual (not Shakespeare, despite regular attributions) said, “Expectation is the root of all heartache”, and I have definitely found that to be true. Resisting the urge to compare myself to others has been particularly helpful too, although in truth I continue to practice letting go of expectation and comparison daily and probably always will. So much expectation and comparison is connected to this notion that certain ways of being are “normal”. As a teenager I was always trying in the most safe and innocuous of ways to demonstrate my “independence” from what “everyone else” was doing. But when we do what we do to thumb our nose at the norms, we are just as bound by them as if we only do what we do to succumb. Gradually I’m learning to find guidance from within without those filters of expectation and comparison.Read More