Valentine's Day is one of those holidays that reminds me I'm not a good enough parent.
You other non-perfect moms probably know exactly what I'm talking about here without going into very many details. But here I am, describing all of the ways I fail.
I don't do cute Valentine's cards for my kids.
I know, I know, how dare me.
Most people nowadays get their creative ideas from Pinterest, and I certainly can replicate some of those. But, I just don't.
One year I purchased a lot of cheap bubbles and did a cute saying on the bubbles like "You blow me away." I spent hours tracking down the bubbles, bags, paper and print. For what? My kids didn't care.
So, now, I buy prepackaged kits from whatever grocery store I ran into at the last minute because I forgot they have to pass them out.
That brings up another point. Why?
Why do kids still pass out these insignificant cards?
I'm obviously a working mom. Most of us are these days. Why do we feel the need to show the world how great we are with the most perfect Valentine's packages?
It's everywhere, and we're likely all guilty of it.
I've posted a social media picture of myself with the most perfect blue cupcakes I made at 11 p.m. the night before my daughter's birthday party at school. Sure, they were cute, but I really just wanted someone to tell me I'm Superwoman.
When I saw Tuesday night what the kids picked up for cards this year, I heard the disappointment in my own voice.
"Those cards don't even have candy or pencils or anything fun with them," I told my husband. "Our kids are going to be those kids with crappy cards."
Another failure, I presumed.
I felt like I found my spirit animal on Facebook Wednesday morning when I ran across a woman by the name of Bunmi Laditan. She's a "writer, speaker, mom, person," according to her blog.
She's also hilariously honest and says everything I want to scream at myself and other moms.
"Dinner is served!" she wrote in a tongue-in-cheek Facebook photo post Tuesday night. "The chicken nuggets are organic, free-range, rescue chickens who communicated to me in chicken language that they wanted to die to nourish my children.
" Those aren't fries, they are rutabaga spears from my garden lightly fried in peanut oil from my peanut grove. The box was a craft I did with my children while I was being mindful with them in our television-free living room."
She pokes fun at our need as mothers to appear like we have it all together when we hate to admit we don't. At least that's the case for me.
I know I'll never be the woman who has the matching jewelry to her clothes, or the woman who begs to be the class mom. I'm the mom who is figuring out how we can decorate this shoe box for Valentine's Day with as little effort as possible.
And I'm learning to be OK with that.
Stephanie Pedersen, senior editor, firstname.lastname@example.org.