Sometimes I literally want to yell “nailed it!” when I make my kids happy, or successfully and swiftly get out the door on schedule, or get both kids to nap at the same time.

Let’s be honest—juggling everything a mother does is impressive. Let’s just take a moment to pause. And pat ourselves on the back. Or give ourselves a little hug. Or do a happy dance. Whatever feels less awkward for you. ?

For real. Do it.

Did you?

Felt good right?

We’re pretty awesome.

All this juggling usually feels normal. But it also can feel like a lot. Work, toddlers, babies, pregnancy, maternity leave, finding childcare, marriage, date night, getting enough sleep, doing face masks (self care-ing and whatnot), doctor’s appointments, play dates, worrying about everyone’s safety—the list can go on and on and on. My point is, there’s a lot on our plates.

So, we do our best. We always do our best. That’s in our mother-DNA. But sometimes we sort of fall short even when our intentions are so pure and so good. Sometimes, it just doesn’t work out as planned.

And, boy! Do I have plenty examples of that…

Girls, Mommy tried to be a “fun mom” when we went to see Sing. Remember how much fun that was? Well, I didn’t think you’d then develop an obsession for repeating “Oh my gosh. Look. At. Her. Butt.” like those fresh singing bunnies. Yay. ?

Mommy tried to be a “carefree mom” when I forced myself to momentarily forget my obsession with overpacking and over-preparing and left the house with the bare minimum. Well, I learned my lesson when I only had two wipes to tackle a definite ten-wipe-or-more diaper situation. It wasn’t pretty, people, it wasn’t pretty. ?

Mommy tried to be a “gourmet-organic-I have my ducks in a row mom” when the table was set on time and everyone was hungry and I felt like a winner because the timer went off for the chicken roasting in the oven and I was about to grab it but then realized…I never actually turned the oven on…at all. Well, thank God for pizza, right?? ?

Mommy tried to be “on time.” I put this in quotes because what is time when you have a three-year-old and a 16-month-old? I try to be on time every single day and probably about 1/10 tries we get it right. Or semi-right. Once I get both girls dressed, fed, teeth brushed, shoes on, one of them changed again (Cheerios incident, obvi), hair ‘do’s done, then at least make sure I have changed out of my PJs and put clothes on…the morning has basically disappeared. ⌚

Mommy tried to be a healthy eating, no junk mama. But then the clock struck 4:00 p.m. and I turned into the very hungry momerpillar. I ate through 5 Oreos, 10 Triscuit crackers, 1 avocado, the rest of my kiddo’s mac and cheese from lunch, a slice of leftover birthday ice cream cake, a cheese stick (or two) and roughly 50-55 goldfish crackers. At least I threw the avocado in there…? ?

Mommy tried to erase any trace of pregnancy at three months postpartum. With Spanx. Not one, but two pair of Spanx. For the sake of vanity. For the sake of feeling “good.” For the sake of trying to remember I was a woman—not ‘just’ a mother. I was a bridesmaid in a wedding. It was a tight, gold, shimmery gown vs my postpartum belly blues.

Guess what? It didn’t magically make the flesh on my stomach disappear. And guess what? It was basically a torture chamber for my insides. And guess what? It was hard to pee. And most of all, it was unnecessary. My stomach just housed my perfect little three-month-old baby for 41 weeks—it didn’t deserve that treatment. It deserved some respect for the amazing body that it was, is and always will be—at any stage of this journey called motherhood. ?

Sometimes, friends, life is messy. We know that. So I strive to remind myself that sometimes…all I can do is laugh.

Because, perfect—what is ‘perfect’?

To me, it’s this life I call mine. My husband, my daughters, my family and friends, my job. The good, the bad and the beautiful of it all—that’s perfection.

What I am aiming to teach my daughters (and myself) every day is that nothing in life goes exactly as planned. But that’s okay. Because we’re going to try hard anyway. We’re going to give it our all and put our best foot forward. And then we’ll do it again the next day. And the next. And the one after that, too.

As a mom, I’m managing (almost literally) a million things on any given day. And showing up and working hard and being present is all I can ask of myself—and my girls.

We only get one shot at this thing called life.

At this thing called motherhood. Let’s own it. All of it—the mistakes, the ‘fails,’ the wins, the lessons learned along the way. Because during all of it, we are trying. And those little watchful eyes will see that, and they’ll follow suit.