Editor's note: This piece by Lisa-Jo Baker originally appeared on her blog, lisajobaker.com. It has been shared here with the author's permission.
For the days we are running on empty. For the days we just don't think we have it in us to read one more story, play one more game of Uno, wash one more round of sheets. For the days when we think everyone else has it together. For the days we're sure anyone else would do this job better.
For those days. You know the ones.
Repeat after me:
1. I shall not judge my house, my kid's summer activities or my crafting skills by Pinterest's standards.
2. I shall not measure what I've accomplished today by the loads of unfolded laundry but by the assurance of deep love I've tickled into my kids.
3. I shall say yes to blanket forts and see past the chaos to the memories we're building.
4. I shall surprise my kids with trips to get ice cream when they're already in their pajamas.
5. I shall not compare myself to other mothers but find my identity in the God who trusted me with these kids in the first place.
6. I shall remember that a messy house at peace is better than an immaculate house tied up in knots.
7. I shall play music loudly and teach my kids the joy of wildly uncoordinated dance.
8. I shall remind myself that perfect is simply a street sign at the intersection of impossible and frustration in Never Never land.
9. I shall embrace the fact that in becoming a mom I traded perfect for a house full of real.
10. I shall promise to love this body that bore these three children out loud, especially in front of my daughter.
11. I shall give my other mother friends the gift of guilt-free friendship.
12. I shall do my best to admit to my people my unfine moments.
13. I shall say sorry when sorry is necessary.
14. I pray God I shall never be too proud, angry or stubborn to ask for my children's forgiveness.
15. I shall make space in my grown-up world for goofball moments with my kids.
16. I shall love their father and make sure they know I love him.
17. I shall model kind words to kids and grown-ups alike.
18. I shall not be intimidated by the inside of my minivan this season of chip bags, goldfish crackers and discarded socks too shall pass.
19. I shall always make time to encourage new moms.
20. I shall not resent that last call for kisses and cups of water but remember instead that when I blink they'll all be in college.
... with love from one tired mother to another.