Letting Go of the Need to Keep Perfectly Clean Kids

Today’s guest blogger is a freelance writer, a blogger, and of course, a mom! She writes for WEtv.com and recently launched her own blog, http://anewmomintown.com, to help other moms navigate through motherhood without taking it too seriously. We asked her to share her tips for letting go of Type A tendencies. Here’s what she had to say:

Now that I have kids, my mom constantly reminds me about my first week at preschool.  The story always starts with…

“Your teacher thought there was something wrong because

you didn’t like to touch sand…”

Before I was a mom, I had no interest in debating that statement because it described me perfectly.  Sand.  Yuck!  For over 30 years, I managed to take mental notes of anything I touched that I defined as grimy, dirty or contaminated and looked for the nearest sink to wash the germs away (too bad I didn’t invent anti-bacterial soap when I had the chance).

Fast forward to 2009, my beautiful baby girl arrived.  It was hard for me to look at her and not promise to keep her safe and sanitized.  Her newborn months were filled with a morning wipe down, numerous clothing and diaper changes, and an evening bath.  I always felt so rewarded when other moms complimented how immaculate I kept her and joked they would have no problem letting their kid share a bottle with mine.  But when my little clean machine went to nursery, the new reality kicked in.

I would drop her off stain and germ-free and expected her to stay that way all morning.  However, when I returned to pick her up she would greet me with mulch jammed in her fingernails, left over snack stuck to her clothes, a giant hug, and sometimes a wet sneeze in my face.  What was happening?  My tidy tot was taken over by gross, slimy residue and snot, BUT more importantly FUN.

The laughter from this tiny hot mess opened my eyes and mind.  Kids are like sponges, I could either teach her to absorb my bad habits or my good ones.  I knew I had to make a mommy adjustment ASAP.  My obsessions may stick with me, but my days as a paranoid parent were about to come to a close.  Here are five things I learned from that day.

Let Go

Just because you’re a mom doesn’t mean you don’t make mistakes.  Recognizing your shortcomings and making strides to improve yourself is a good indication that you are ready to make a change.

Pop The Bubble

Face it.  Your kids are going to get sick and so are you.  It’s always good to practice healthy habits, but protecting your kids from every virus or cold is impossible.

Lead By Example

And I don’t mean you mom.  Take a cue from your child.  If she is having the best time rolling in the mud or jumping in the puddles maybe you should give it a try.

Challenge Yourself

We all want to keep our little angels fresh, but what about not bathing them for a night or putting them to bed without brushing their teeth?  The worst thing that can happen…they may make themselves sick from their stinky breath ☺.

Happiness is Contagious

Nothing makes a parent happier than seeing their child enjoy themselves.  It means you’re doing your job correctly.

Check out more of Hope’s writing at her website! And if you’re interested in guest blogging (real moms only please) drop us a line!

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