So many other moms seem to be nailing it — and by it, I mean motherhood (and probably their perfect husbands, too).

I look to my left and there’s a mom looking gorgeous, with her perfectly clean and happy kid standing next to her and her husband leaning in for a gentle kiss.

I look to my right and I see another mom, she too perfectly dressed and made up, and also with her equally well-dressed and well-behaved children. I see her husband lean in and whisper something in her ear.

For a hot second (okay, definitely for more than a second) I think about how I wish I could be them. How nice it would be to get it right all of the time — my looks, my marriage, my parenting, my total presentation to the world.

How nice would it be to look like her and to have my kids actually listen to me all of the time.

How nice would it be to have a relationship that is easy, with a man that is easy on the eyes and easy on me when I make mistakes.

And of course, how nice would it be in general to have this “perfect life” that everyone else around me seems to have.

I took a moment to ponder this while I looked down (literally and figuratively) at my messy self, my half-dressed, snotty-nosed, strong-willed children, and typically well-meaning husband and for a moment, a brief moment, I started to feel a little sad and a bit jealous too.

But then something happened.

I looked to my left again and this time I saw something different. I saw an equally exhausted momma, wearing yesterday’s clothes and a messy bun, trying to calm her crying daughter who was only wearing a diaper. Her husband was nowhere in sight.

I looked to my right and I saw another mother and her husband who were both visibly depleted of energy, whose kids were still in their pajamas in the middle of the day. One child was on the grocery store floor having a tantrum, while the other two children were arguing inside of the grocery cart. Both parents were angrily looking to the other to “fix” the situation.

For a hot second (okay, definitely for more than a second) I thought about how supported I now felt. How nice it was to know that there are plenty of other moms out there who aren’t getting it right all of the time — not their looks, not their marriage, not their parenting, and surely not their total presentation to the world.

And in that moment, I realized that nobody looks good all of the time.

Nobody has kids that actually listen to them all of the time.

Nobody has a relationship that is easy all of the time.

And, you know what else no one around me has, like ever? A “perfect life”. Why? Because there is no such thing, at least not in the fairytale sense.

So, what happened next? Well, I looked inward at myself again and realized that all of my life’s imperfections are exactly what makes it perfect for me. How ironic, right? But it is perfect; it’s perfectly, imperfectly beautiful, perfectly messy, perfectly humorous, perfectly challenging, but most of all perfectly unique to me.

And for a hot second and every second since, I have subscribed to the notion that nailing motherhood and marriage simply means that you care about yourself, your children, and your spouse.

(tips on nailing your husband have been excluded cause well, I’m a momma and my daughter likes to read my articles ? )

Nicole Merritt is a mother of three and the Owner and Founder of jthreeNMe, an imperfectly authentic peek at real-life marriage, parenting, and self-improvement. jthreeNMe is raw, honest, empowering, inspiring, and entertaining; it’s like chicken soup for those that are exhausted, over-stressed and under-inebriated, yet still utterly happy. Nicole’s work has been featured by Scary Mommy, The Good Men Project, BLUNTmoms, Sammiches & Psych Meds, Thought Catalog, Everyday Family, Motherly & many others. You can follow Nicole at jthreeNMe and on FacebookPinterestInstagram & Twitter!



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