Over the last twenty years, I’ve been all sorts of moms. I’ve been a new mom and a not-so-new mom. I’ve been Room Mom, Team Mom, Scout Mom, Snack Mom and PTA mom. Soccer mom, hockey mom, softball mom, cheer mom, swim team mom. I’ve been a stay-at-home mom and a working mom. Cool mom and strict mom. Fun mom, worried mom, tired mom. In the end, I’d love to say I’ve been a fabulous mom. I’m just not sure I fit the bill.

old clockI have a picture of Fabulous Mom in my head. For one thing, Fabulous Mom is always on time. She’s first to pick up from play dates and right on schedule for birthday parties. Not once has she left a child standing at the ball field with a coach looking at his watch. She’s punctual for dentist appointments and at least ten minutes early to parent-teacher conferences. Carpool never waits for Fabulous Mom.

Furthermore, Fabulous Mom doesn’t forget a thing. Field trip permission slips and Picture Day order forms? She’s on it. New ink cartridges for the printer, orange slices for Saturday’s game, poster board for the science project? Not a problem. She remembers to man her booth at the school carnival, send the heart-shaped cookies for Valentine’s Day and have all costumes ready to go before the big night. Fabulous Mom never turns the car around because, naturally, all of her children have shoes. No sir, nothing slips by Fabulous Mom.

Not surprisingly, Fabulous Mom is also a fabulous dresser. And homemaker. And cook. She’s stylish and well-accessorized at allfabulous mom fashiontimes; more fashion, less flip-flops. She wouldn’t dream of embarrassing her kids by running to Target in an old sorority t-shirt and shower hair. Make-up is a must for volunteering in the classroom; yoga pants are worn to the gym (not dance recitals). Her house is always tidy, her laundry perpetually folded. Somehow, she avoids burning bake sale brownies and whips up tasty, fully organic meals even when Dad’s out of town. Cereal for dinner is not an option for Fabulous Mom.

Lastly, Fabulous Mom only makes right decisions. She doesn’t overreact when her kids break something, lose something or crash into something. She remains calm and listens diligently before reaching conclusions. Fabulous Mom doles out consequences fairly, lovingly, confidently. She knows precisely how to solve all problems; there isn’t a friend/sibling/school/team/relationship/homework dilemma that she can’t take. She refuses to get frustrated, overwhelmed or impatient with her children. Oh, and Fabulous Mom never yells. Like, ever.

So, as suspected, I’m not a fabulous mom. And I never will be. But I am a mom who never stops trying. Never stops loving. Never stops praying. Mother walking her baby boy on the beach for the first time. (sepia version)Never stops wanting the best for the people that matter most to me in this world. No matter what kind of day I’ve had as a mother, whatever struggles I’ve faced or mistakes I’ve made, as sure as the sun continues to rise, I will continue to try. And to love. And to pray. And to want the best for my kids. Because that’s what good moms do. And come to think of it, that’s the only kind of mom I ever wanted to be.