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High Expectations, Stress, Exhaustion and Letting Go

Our Story: - I'm having that kind of day where I'm starting to fear that I am a flight risk
I love being a mom more then I ever dreamed. I also realize that coming from the work force to becoming a stay at home mom takes a lot of adjustments. I have always had high expectations for myself. When I was working I gave it my all, did my job, earned money and still expected myself to be a top notch, above average, clean house and dinner on the table kind of wife. Things were simple back and wife.
Now, I have a sweet midget hanging on my legs all day, but my expectations haven't changed.
If anything my uncontrollable list of expectations has gotten worse: Mom of the Year, Teacher, Loving Wife, Care Taker, Nurse and Maid. Yet, even with that list I refuse to give myself an ounce of slack. I still expect that without fail I am to save by grocery shopping frugally and believe it or not, my twisted sense of duty still won't let me rest until I am also making money of some kind. What is wrong with me? A case of stay at home mom high expectations.
We have a God of grace and yet we as moms very seldomly portrait this Christ like attribute when it comes to judging ourselves. Oh, we have grace when the little one gets into the cookie jar or when other people don't do as they should, but what about grace for mom? 
Too high expectations causes so much unneeded stress, exhaustion and unhappiness. In some cases it can even bring on depression. Just yesterday my little guy had a cold and was teething. It was just one of those days. I had tried cleaning and a million other tasks on my list that day, but by that evening I was physically and mentally exhausted with nothing to show for it. I was mentally exhausted because my high expectations told me I "HAD" to have a clean house, dinner ready and other numerous tasks done by the end of the day or I was obviously slacking. So, I was stressed and not the mom or wife I wanted to be that evening. 
I think that as a mom I need to realize it is OK to have a list of things to do, but I need to learn to relax. I need to give myself leeway for some things not getting done.
 Life is crazy and things happen during the day, all day long. I personally need to "Let It Go". This does not mean that all of a sudden I never clean or that I let dirty diapers stack to the ceiling, but next time I see my day going the way of the Dodo Bird I am going to try to relax and let it go. It is going to be OK. Today I was able to get everything done that was on my list yesterday. How much better would it have been if I had just relaxed and not worried so much yesterday?
I love a good list. I would never get anything done without one, but I need to learn to relax. Enjoy life and motherhood. Next time the day goes down the toilet, just sit down, take a deep breath and play with your little ones. What?! Sit in the middle of dirty clothes, dirty dishes and a million toys? Yes, some days you just need to "Let It Go". These kind of days I find are best described by this famous quote from Batman, "Some days you just can't get rid of a bomb." Laugh, it is good for the soul.


  1. I totally needed to read this today! Thanks for such an inspiring post! I tend to freak out because I never get everything I want to get done for the day. It's nice to see that I'm not alone.

    ~Jessica Scott

  2. I have to admit, 3 kids down the line, that if I have managed to get the toys off the floor, the mucky clothes in a wash basket, and dinner on the table by 5pm I've done good! It's also worth baring in mind that as kids get older they can help. When I'm getting dinner ready to serve they (the 5 & 3yo) are charged with putting toys & books away, and putting any discarded clothes in the kitchen (where a wash basket awaits). My 1yo now copies them believing it to be a game. Makes life a LOT easier!

    1. My little man being my little helper in a few years is encouraging to think about:) I'm already attempting to make "Clean Up" time fun so one day when he is older he can do it on his own:)

  3. You are so right about this Joanna. I am now "hanging out" with baby #3 (the older are teens) and sometimes I catch myself with one minute ... then have to stop. They are only these ages once in their life and sometimes just the necessary will do on those well-intended to be planned days. Thank you for sharing your posts in the Google+ Moms Community.


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