I was thinking all day about mothers and how the world is against them and sure they're all doing it wrong. How much bad advice we get from people who should know better (like doctors) and worse advice we get from anyone selling anything (like parenting magazines and formula companies) and how much worst of all we're condemned by ourselves for not being someone else. Or, rather, for not having everyone else's talents and none of their weaknesses.
But here's the thing: God gave people moms. He could have set it up so people had babies like frogs--lay 'em and leave 'em--but He didn't.
And scientists even agree now that just hearing your mom's voice can calm you down when you're unhappy or stressed. Moms are there for the same reason Jesus is (only on a smaller scale because we are not Him): They give us an anchor and peace and direction. The sound of their voice makes us calmer and help us get through.
I've noticed over and over that people who have abusive moms lack this calming, anchoring influence in their lives and they suffer for it. They're more prone to depression and anxiety. They lack a secure space that moms give us.
And here's the amazing thing--it works for all loving moms. It has nothing to do with the condition of the floors, or how you decorate, or if you can't figure how the heck little girls hair is supposed to look. It works if you went to every baseball game and if you went to none of them. It works if you baked cookies or if you couldn't even figure out frozen pizza. It works if you actually make stuff that looks like pinterest or if, like most of us, you "nailed it." It works if your hair looks pretty or you can't remember if you brushed it today or if you let your kids fix it and went to the store that way because you forgot. It works if you let them watch movies or use computers, and if you let them eat white bread, and if you can't figure out bedtime despite working on it for 13 years (and counting). It works if you know everything about parenting or if you managed to have a few more kids and realized that you don't actually know anything.
If you did your best to be a real mother, you are a gift to your children forever. And to their children. It's this amazing thing.
Sometimes we can't find Jesus. Sometimes we can't hear Him, or figure out how to access the atonement. But God didn't leave us alone--He gave us moms, in all their variety.
It's a huge responsibility. It's a huge privilege. Some women screw it up. But most of us do our best and that is enough.