I may not be a perfect mom—but I give it my all every single day

That’s what matters most, right? ?

I may not be a perfect mom—but I give it my all every single day

I remember trying to breastfeed my second child right after she was born. It hurt so much. After having successfully breastfed my oldest daughter, I knew something wasn’t right with my pain. I understood it could be uncomfortable at first, but nothing changing positions or widening her latch couldn’t fix.

I cried to my sister who is (lucky for me!) a lactation counselor saying how I didn’t understand why this wasn’t working. That I was trying so hard and I had done this before so why wasn’t it clicking?

The pain continued for a few days, but I kept asking my sister for help and eventually me, my daughter and my sister figured it out together.

I’m really grateful for that, but I do also realize that it might not have worked out the way I had necessarily hoped it would—even though I had tried really, really hard.

Because a lesson I am humbled by over and over in my motherhood journey is that I can try and try and try—and sometimes things work out the way I want them to and, well, sometimes they don’t.

I am not perfect, and I don’t pretend to be, because quite frankly—that’s exhausting. I often wear my husband’s sweatshirts and yoga pants and have way more failed Pinterest attempts at crafts or desserts than wins. (I actually don’t have any wins, TBH.)

I lose my patience and then feel guilty and I say the wrong thing and wish I said something better or more meaningful (like Mary Poppins or Fräulein Maria or some other wise, all-knowing Julie Andrews character would say) but sometimes I just end up feeling like I came up short somehow.

But I love my children deeply. Despite my imperfections and faults—I give them 100% of my heart every single day of my life. That’s what matters most, right?

And so kids, I want you to know that I try. I try really hard. Maybe you realize my effort. Maybe you don’t. Maybe you won’t fully understand it until you’re a mother yourself, if you decide to go that route.

Even when I don’t have anything philosophical to say in response to your “This is the wrong color Play Doh!” meltdown—I am trying. Trying to keep my cool and trying to calmly respond to you in this moment of despair. (Usually this includes a quote or song lyric from Daniel Tiger, who is basically the Plato of our time anyway.)

Even when I forget to bring you to your dentist appointment because I made it five months ago—I am trying. Trying to remember to do these important things and trying to keep everything organized. (To be fair, I’m trying to remember something from five minutes ago, so five months ago is a bit of a stretch. Just sayin’...)

Even when I serve you chicken nuggets for dinner instead of something from Pinterest that takes much more brain power and prep time and one or two ingredients I definitely don’t have—I am trying. Trying to fill your bellies with food and keep those growing bones satisfied.

Even when you feel like I am not helping you because I’m not getting the toy you want back from your sister and you tell me I’m mean—I am trying. Trying to help you two work things out and understand how we work through strong emotions. (Crying in my room is usually my go-to strategy to do that, FYI.)

Even when—to the outside world—I look like a hot mess at drop off because I’m not dressed up and only had time to choose between brushing my teeth and putting makeup on—I am trying. Trying to get you to school on time and keep the peace. (And trying to be responsible. Teeth won...I mean, teeth have to win, right? Or should concealer? Am I adulting all wrong?)

Even when I seem stressed because we have bills to pay and insurance claims to take care of and big parenting decisions to make—I am trying. Trying to provide for you and care for you and give you the best life possible.

Even when I am conflicted about whether I should or shouldn’t be working or whether I should or shouldn’t be staying at home—I am trying. Trying to savor as many moments of your childhood possible. Trying to remember every chubby newborn roll, every funny toddler saying, every amazing preschooler discovery.

Even when I am feeling guilty about taking time for myself to go to the gym or spend time with my girlfriends or thinking about how one day I’ll go on vacation for a few days sans kids—I am trying. Trying to fill my cup so I can be the best, happiest version of myself possible. So I can be recharged and renewed. (Aka “nice mommy”.)

In the end, I mostly want to be remembered as a mother who gave her all.

Someone who put her children first and loved them passionately.

Someone who made mistakes but learned from them and moved on after them.

Someone who never gave up despite roadblocks and challenges along the way.

Someone with big dreams who worked hard.

Someone who was proud to be a good role model for her babies.

And for being someone who tried really, really hard to do her best. Every day of her life.

We're so glad to live in a time when modern baby gear exists. Sure, no one is going to argue that having a baby is easy—but it can be easier with support from some gadgets designed to help your baby and put your mind at ease.

As you build your baby registry, look for products that go the extra mile to make your life a whole lot easier. For example, what's better than a bassinet? A bassinet that can rock by itself. And what's better than a traditional baby monitor? One that allows you to actually take a peek at your baby. Believe us when we say these upgrades can make all the difference.

Here are 10 baby gadgets that will make your life so much easier… relatively speaking, of course!

A bassinet to promote safe + sound sleep

HALO Innovations Bassinest Swivel Sleeper Essenta Series Nautical Net

The safest place for your newborn to sleep is in your room, but not in your bed. Thanks to the swivel function of the Halo Bassinest, you can easily tend to your baby during the night—which means more sleep for you, too. Trust us when we say that is the best gift you can give a new parent.


A smart swing for your baby

4moms mamaRoo 4 Bluetooth Enabled High-Tech Baby Swing - Classic

Believe it or not, many babies are born with strong opinions about how they want to be rocked, swung or shushed to calm down. With the mamaRoo's various motions and reclining positions, you'll be able to find a setting your baby loves when you need to free up your hands for a bit.


A complete travel system for car + sidewalk

Chicco Bravo Travel System - Indigo

No matter where the day takes you—or what mode of transportation you need to get there—getting a complete travel system for your baby will equip you for anything.


A swaddle you don’t have to wrestle

Love To Dream Swaddle UP Original

What do babies and Harry Houdini have in common? A knack for breaking out of tight constraints—which can be a headache when swaddling is the best way to help promote good sleep. Thanks to a breakout-proof swaddle that allows your baby to sleep with their hands up, you don't have to work up a sweat just to get your baby comfortably swaddled.


A nursery wherever you need it

Baby Trend Lil Snooze Deluxe II Nursery Center

During the early days of parenting (when you are feeding and changing your baby around the clock), having convenient access to everything you need with a go-anywhere nursery station can save you serious time and energy.


A little help for stuffy noses

Fridababy NoseFrida Nasal Aspirator

Up until the point years down the road when your child is able to blow their own nose, the sniffles can be a real struggle—but not with a nasal aspirator that makes it easy for you to get that snot out of their nose.


A way to keep an eye on your baby

VTech 5" Digital Video Baby Monitor - VM5251

Trust us when we say you'll sleep better when you know your baby is also sleeping soundly. That's why we're so thankful for modern-day video monitors, which allow you to check in on your sleeping baby without running the risk of waking them up when you sneak in for a peek.


A bassinet for hands-free rocking

Simmons Kids Silent Auto Gliding Elite Bassinet - Odyssey

Babies are soothed by rocking motions. But what does that mean for you if you can't rock them throughout the night? With an auto-gliding bassinet, they can comfortably drift off to sleep... and continue snoozing.


An easy way to contain diaper smells

Diaper Genie Expressions Pail

Sometimes it's the little conveniences that make a big difference in the quality of your day-to-day life. That's why a great diaper pail should not be undervalued: By containing the smell, you will save yourself dozens upon dozens of trips to the garbage can.


A white noise machine that pulls double duty

Hatch Rest Sound Machine, Night Light & Time-to-Rise

A phone-controlled sound machine may be something you never considered until now, but it will be a major lifesaver for years to come, especially as it can also function as a time-to-rise clock that promotes good sleep habits for your child.


And as for securing all these awesome products? Well, a Target baby registry is the way to do it. By creating your baby registry with Target, you will also enjoy their Year of Benefits registry program, which includes perks like a welcome kit with more than $100 in savings and samples, two 15% off coupons to complete your registry, and a full year of returns. The benefits are better than ever right now: Target just launched the Year of Exclusive Deals perk as one of its registry benefits, and this includes a year's worth of discounts on baby essentials (think diapers and formula) and comes complementary when you sign up for Target Circle.

Because while parenting may not be "easy," deciding to register with Target definitely is an easy decision. Start your Target baby registry now and enjoy shopping with a Year of Benefits featuring a Year of Exclusive Deals available via Target Circle, two 15% off coupons, a year of hassle-free returns, a free welcome kit and more!

This article was sponsored by Target. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

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I never wanted to be a mom. It wasn't something I ever thought would happen until I fell madly in love with my husband—who knew very well he wanted children. While he was a natural at entertaining our nephews or our friends' kids, I would awkwardly try to interact with them, not really knowing what to say or do.

Our first pregnancy was a surprise, a much-wanted one but also a unicorn, "first try" kind of pregnancy. As my belly grew bigger, so did my insecurities. How do you even mom when you never saw motherhood in your future? I focused all my uncertainties on coming up with a plan for the delivery of my baby—which proved to be a terrible idea when my dreamed-of unmedicated vaginal birth turned into an emergency C-section. I couldn't even start motherhood the way I wanted, I thought. And that feeling happened again when I couldn't breastfeed and instead had to pump and bottle-feed. And once more, when all the stress from things not going my way turned into debilitating postpartum anxiety that left me not really enjoying my brand new baby.

As my baby grew, slowly so did my confidence that I could do this. When he would tumble to the ground while learning how to walk and only my hugs could calm him, I felt invincible. But on the nights he wouldn't sleep—whether because he was going through a regression, a leap, a teeth eruption or just a full moon—I would break down in tears to my husband telling him that he was a better parent than me.

Then I found out I was pregnant again, and that this time it was twins. I panicked. I really cannot do two babies at the same time. I kept repeating that to myself (and to my poor husband) at every single appointment we had because I was just terrified. He, of course, thought I could absolutely do it, and he got me through a very hard pregnancy.

When the twins were born at full term and just as big as singleton babies, I still felt inadequate, despite the monumental effort I had made to grow these healthy babies and go through a repeat C-section to make sure they were both okay. I still felt my skin crawl when they cried and thought, What if I can't calm them down? I still turned to my husband for diaper changes because I wasn't a good enough mom for twins.

My husband reminded me (and still does) that I am exactly what my babies need. That I am enough. A phrase that has now become my mantra, both in motherhood and beyond, because as my husband likes to say, I'm the queen of selling myself short on everything.

So when my babies start crying, I tell myself that I am enough to calm them down.

When my toddler has a tantrum, I remind myself that I am enough to get through to him.

When I go out with the three kids by myself and start sweating about everything that could go wrong (poop explosions times three), I remind myself that I am enough to handle it all, even with a little humor.

And then one day I found this bracelet. Initially, I thought how cheesy it'd be to wear a reminder like this on my wrist, but I bought it anyway because something about it was calling my name. I'm so glad I did because since day one I haven't stopped wearing it.

Every time I look down, there it is, shining back at me. I am enough.

I Am Enough bracelet 

SONTAKEY  I Am Enough Bracelet

May this Oath Bracelet be your reminder that you are perfect just the way you are. That you are enough for your children, you are enough for your friends & family, you are enough for everything that you do. You are enough, mama <3


We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.


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