When You Feel Like a Bad Mom

Mastermind Weekend 1/16

Hey there!

I'm Tina

I’m the owner of Carrots ‘N’ Cake as well as a Certified Nutrition Coach and Functional Diagnostic Nutrition Practitioner (FDN-P). I use macros and functional nutrition to help women find balance within their diets while achieving their body composition goals.

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Today’s blog post is about one of the toughest jobs in the world – being a mom! Becoming a mother has been one of the most rewarding and joy-filled experiences of my life. There is nothing that gives me more happiness then the privilege of watching Quinn grow into a smart, curious, and hilarious little boy. I love him to the moon and back times infinity!

But every once in a while, I have one of “those days” where it seems like everything just, well… sucks. I think every mom, everywhere, knows exactly what I’m talking about – those mornings when you wake up at 4:00 AM after a night of broken sleep, only to start the day with a major toddler tantrum, followed by so. much. whining, which then continues all. day. long. Ugh. I’ve been there so many times and try to have patience, but then I just snap.

Oy. Those days hurt, and I feel like the worst mom ever. Unfortunately, those are the times when my “inner critic” comes out loud and clear. You know what I’m talking about, right? The one that tells me that I’m a “bad mom” and that I’m doing “a crappy job.” Maybe you have that same little voice in your head too. It’s the worst.

Our inner critic plays a big role in how we feel and, for better or for worse, the way we feel can make or break us. But the funny thing about feelings is that we don’t always have to listen to them. We often give negative thoughts more power than they deserve, and I think it’s time that all moms changed our thinking.

Being a mom is not easy. It’s a journey filled with plenty of rough and bumpy spots along the road. Monday can be great, but, by Tuesday, life has gone in all sorts of wrong directions, leaving me feeling frustrated, defeated, and simply like a “bad mom.” In those moments of self-doubt, I try to tell myself that while the day may have been a failure, I certainly am not! I accept it for what it is and move on. Tomorrow is a new day!

Raising a kid is hard, whether you have one or five. Don’t get me wrong – social media is an awesome way to find inspiration and build a community, but it can also lead to the ugly rabbit hole of comparison. Comparison is the thief of joy. Scrolling through Instagram is like viewing a digital photo album with perfectly curated snapshots of someone else’s life – kids happily eating kale, walks to the park in the sunshine, a family outing where everyone is smiling (and not throwing tantrums). What we sometimes don’t realize is that these are just select magical moments captured on camera in what could have otherwise been a terrible day. That’s why I always try to keep it real with you guys and share the good, the bad, and the ugly!

I have had some not-so-fine moments as a parent. Everyone makes mistakes, even moms, because moms are human (whoa). But those same mistakes that we beat ourselves up over might actually help our tiny humans grow into strong, capable adults. Think back to your own childhood. Many of the adversities we faced as kids helped to shape us into the people we are today! If we were truly “bad moms,” we wouldn’t care. We wouldn’t second (or third)-guess our decisions or worry that we are making the wrong choices. We wouldn’t feel guilty for turning on the television just so that we can have 30 minutes to sit on the couch and drink a glass of wine, even if it’s just to save our own sanity.

I got into this whole parent thing with no idea how to do it. From Quinn’s early days of infancy to the first day of preschool, I’ve been pushed to adapt to situations and circumstances I could have never expected. No matter how many books I read or how much well-meaning advice I listened to, I would have never, ever been prepared enough for motherhood. I think back to the person I was before I was Quinn’s mom (it seems like a lifetime ago) and that Tina isn’t half as tough, resilient, flexible, or patient as this Tina is. I’ve come a long way.

Maybe you need to hear it like I need to hear it, so I am just going to say it: You’re a wonderful mother, and I know you are doing your best. You’re not just enough, you’re more than enough for your family. We’re all just doing the best we can, as mothers, wives, sisters, and friends, and it’s time we gave ourselves that credit.

Bad days happen, and I’ve learned to accept that they are totally normal. Sh*t happens, right? And bad days don’t make me a bad mom. Our life is full of tantrums, half-eaten dinners, super early mornings, and whining galore. But it’s also full of the sweetest moments I could have ever imagined – from singing “You Are My Sunshine” and”the shepherd boy” song with Quinn before drifts off to sleep, to him reaching out to hold my hand during a movie, to him laughing hysterically when we play “cats” together. Each year of motherhood just gets better and better. It’s also wonderfully beautiful. I can’t say that I’d want it any other way, and I’m sure all you moms out there would definitely agree!

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79 Comments

  1. Rings perfectly true! Thanks for the pep talk Sure looks like you’re doing alright too! Love that you point out all the ways you have changed for the good… a great reminder to myself!

  2. Please: read Laura Markham. She’s helped me as a mother and person! Sign up for her newsletter! Momming is hard!

  3. I stopped reading your blog when you put your sweet boy in daycare to drink coffee and go to Crossfit and faff about on the internet. Any good relationship takes time and interest- go to playgroups, meet actual mom friends, and stop trying to shove your child into your adult life 100% of the time. Of course he has tantrums, he’s begging for a real relationship with his mom. Giving up my very lucrative careee to spend my kids days with them has been the best part of my life. I know when my kids are tired or hungry or simply overwhelmed because I’ve spent time understanding them. You can’t help a child you don’t know or won’t grow for. Put this useless blog away and focus on the person you chose to create. He will only become more difficult as he grows because you don’t put in the time it takes to make him adaptable and secure. You can choose to change at any point and I promise you the rewards are amazing beyond measure. I’m sorry this is harsh but your disdain for him is palpable through your blog.

    1. It’s obvious you stopped reading my blog with how little you know about our life. It’s also disheartening as a mom that you took the time to respond this way. I know my child very well and have zero disdain for him – if you read my blog you’d know that. Not all moms who choose to work are bad moms. I’m glad you’re happy with the decisions you’ve made for your family. I’m VERY happy with the ones I’ve made for mine.

      1. @Tina: YOU are a WONDERFUL mother, and I know you are doing your best!
        Sorry you had to read such an awful, judgment comment to start your day. On this anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr’s untimely death, take to heart his words “I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.” Take care, dear internet friend <3 🙂

      2. She was super judgmental….not sure how she read your post since she stopped following …..super unnecessary…..

    2. @@Jenna: Jenna, if you stopped reading her blog, how is it you found this post to comment on? You are a nightmare. I feel sorry for your kids, husband if you have one, friends if you have any, and anyone who knows you. How is being mean and judgmental at all acceptable in your otherwise perfect-sounding world? Go away and leave sincere people alone.

    3. @Jenna: You are mean. I hope your kids don’t end up mean like you. If this blog is a waste of time, then stop reading it….like you claim you did. And, I’d like to say add it is important to keep your own identity when you have children. This sets a good example for them. It teaches them that they as individuals are important and their happiness should not be dependent on anyone or any one thing. It also teaches them that they are not the center of the universe because….they are not and they should learn this early! I repeat….you are mean!

    4. @Jenna live and let live. She is making the best choices for her family as you have yours.
      I can only imagine what you have to say to me since my husband and I decided NOT to have children.
      If you have nothing nice to say, say nothing.
      Thank you Tina for taking the time to blog every day. I come here for inspiration and motivation, please don’t let one person who stopped following you change you!
      Much love, understanding and peace,
      Cathy

    5. @Jenna: ouch this is not a nice way to respond to a fellow mom who is working hard to juggle it all. the best moms dedicate time to self care too; not doing so leads to bitterness (which you may consider that you might have some of based on your hurtful post- perhaps consider time for self care- your family and you will be better for it).
      on top of that, you don’t know tina’s situation; while it is wonderful for you that you were able to stay at home with your children, for many women/families, this is absolutely not feasible financially. giving up an income to be home with children is a privilege. just as you would not want to be shamed for being a stay at home mom it is incredibly divisive to shame working moms- we’re all just doing the best we can.

    6. @Jenna: Hi Jenna – I’m so glad to hear that you’ve decided to drop your lucrative career and devote your entire life and being to raising your children who never have tantrums. That’s truly an amazing feat! I’m wondering if it’s self affirming for you to tear other mothers down because they haven’t made the same choices as you? It is? Again, great. I’m glad that you decided to faff around the internet to find Tina’s blog (which you don’t actually read) and tear her down while she was trying to build others up. I’m also glad that your children are able to spend so much time taking in your perverse and negative world view, while us working Moms are having our children raised by others in daycare. What were my kids’ names again!? Can’t remember, I’ve been faffing around the internet too much while they are at daycare. Usually when I come home I just lock them in the garage so that I can get a pedicure. You’re right, toddler’s tantrums are 100% related to how much time mothers spend with their kids. I know my friends who are stay at home NEVER deal with tantrums, ever. Like never. And you’re right, only a stay at home mom like you can tell when their child is hungry or tired. Usually I just throw some cheerios on the floor and go refill my wine glass, while watching The Bachelor. Thanks for your sincere apology about being harsh as well. It was very heart felt. Hope you enjoy your play date today! I know I’ll be enjoying … those kids of mine. Crap, what are their names!?!

    7. @Jenna
      Jenna, it’s easy to judge from behind your computer screen, huh? If you stopped reading her blog, why are YOU faffing about the internet today? I hope no one ever speaks to your family or kids the way you chose to speak today.

    8. @Jenna: shame on you. You are hateful and your lack of compassion for another mother or for just another human being is disturbing. May the world be kind to you so you can open your heart and mind to empathy. Tina, keep rocking motherhood and figuring it all out along the way. Anyone who says they know it all is a fucking liar.

    9. @Jenna: Yikes. As Cher Horowitz would say, “Way harsh, Tai.”

      It’s super unproductive (not to mention MEAN) to criticize a mom this way. I really do hope you’ve instilled some kindness in your children. If I ever saw my daughter or son criticize someone’s life choices this way, I would be so, so disappointed. It’s one thing to give your feedback on her blog in a constructive, helpful way. Or, just stop reading altogether, if it’s not your thing. But, the truth is, you’ll never know the whole story behind someone’s family. Even really close friends and family. If you don’t live with them day in and day out, you don’t know their whole truth. So, something that might seem odd to you may totally fit the needs of their child. That’s even more true of a blogger.

      The world is a big, mean, ugly place these days. Don’t add to it.

  4. Good grief – it’s too bad there are women out there that would respond this way. I’ve read your blog for years and admire the way you have handled career and motherhood. We all know that raising children is filled with ups, downs, guilt, regrets, and unbelievable joy. You and Mal are the only ones who know what is best for your family. I suppose that you run the risk of criticism when you put your life out there, but there are many of us that enjoy and appreciate that you do. Shame on women who try and tear others down instead of supporting each other.

  5. Holy Sh$t ^^ What a comment up there from Miss Jenna! Tina, I’ve never commented before on a post, but just wanted you to know that I think you’re killing it and have thought to myself on numerous occasions how awesome it is that you’re raising a boy who will one day be a man out there in the world who saw him mom start her own business, work her butt off at the gym every day, be the primary breadwinner of the family (i’m pretty sure you’ve said that here recently?) AND be the sensitive, caring, kind and patient person you are. He will grow up respecting women and honoring their ambition because he has seen it in you. <3 Power on Mama!

  6. Tina – first, thank you for this post. I often have days where I feel like I’ve failed in some way and also and struggle with feelings of doubt or insecurity. I’ve found that surrounding myself with loving and supportive mom friends and reading wonderful blogs like yours makes a world of difference.

    Second, I hope you pay little attention to the comment that Jenna felt the need to submit (especially on such a positive post that was helping to encourage other mothers). Every family has to make choices that work for them and it is very clear that your kiddo is happy, healthy and loved. Congrats to Jenna for having the ability to give up her lucrative career, but not everyone has that choice or even would make that choice if they are able to. We all have enough to contend with without having to worry about other moms providing their unsolicited advice.

  7. That post up there – keep it up since people will give you grief you for deleting it – but shame on her. The last things moms need is negative feedback from another “righteous” mom… Being a mom is tough and complicated, but its not also 100% of our selves. We are multifaceted individuals and I applaud you for understanding what you need to feel fulfilled (career, self-care). Moms too often get into the trap of having to be 100% about their families and leaving their own needs by the wayside. Its a complicated harmony but we need to be personally fulfilled beyond our identity being solely wrapped around our kids. (I focus on this because I KNOW that you’re an awesome mama to Q). Thanks T for keeping it real. I didn’t know much about the “mom job” either and I’m constantly learning on the job (N is a great teacher!) – and its always nice to hear my challenges parroted back through you…we’re our toughest critics, but we love our kiddos and we’re always doing our best – which is all that matters. Love makes a family

  8. Well written and heart felt from another Mama! It’s freaking hard but so lovely at the same time! Don’t listen to the critics! Your doing a great job! We all do it differently and that’s ok!

    A side note: I had a conversation with my mom not too long ago about a past experience. She had forgiven herself but had guilt about an experience …but I have NO memory of it. None! And yet there are other memories that I have, that she doesn’t remember. All this to say, chances are Sweet Quinn won’t remember those hard days b/c there are so many good memories to have. You are a rock star mom!

  9. I’ve also never felt inclined to comment before, but feel the need to today.
    Tina, I commend you for your willingness to be vulnerable and put yourself out there with posts like this- especially when someone comes along and tries to shame you! Thankfully, as adults we all know that the type of comment left by Jenna is a reflection of her and has little to do with who you are as a mom/person.
    You’re doing an excellent job at parenting!

  10. I was just about to comment on how AWESOME a mom you are!! You are amazing and beautiful and Quinn is soooo lucky to have you and Mal as parents. I admire your ability to juggle working, staying healthy AND giving Quinn a fun, loving and adventurous life! My kids barely get out of the house!! You really are an inspiration to all women and mothers.

    That comment above actually made me sick to my stomach to read.

  11. I don’t have kids yet, but hope to start that journey in the near future. I have read your blog for years. Watching you grow as a person and a mom has been so inspirational. I love reading posts like this from you because it reminds me that everything in life doesn’t have to be “perfect” to be great. We all have struggles and hard days, but your blog really demonstrates that it’s possible to work through those challenges and appreciate the journey! You are doing a fabulous job as a mom and I would like to thank you for putting yourself out there on the internet to help motivate others like me.

  12. Tina- Thank you for this post. You are a WONDERFUL mother as well! Having a three year old boy myself, I can relate alot! Juggling work, fitness and home life is TOUGH but you’ve shown me it can be done! Which means I’m waking up at 5am to workout, prepping dinner the night before, cuddling on the couch when I want to clean. Its a balancing act for sure.

    I’ve struggled with feeling selfish for wanting time to myself – a sense of guilt when I want to workout for an hour instead of tending to my children. But to be honest if I didn’t get that time I’d have nothing to offer to my family – I’d be miserable.

    Keep doing what you’re doing Tina!Lets continue to bring each other UP instead of down #momsolidarity

  13. Tina you are an inspiration to working moms. Like others have said, not all of us can quit our jobs, or would even want to if we could. My job is fulfilling to me and helps my family have the lifestyle we want. My child is in daycare all day M-F but that doesn’t mean I don’t know her or love her. Also, everyone of my friends that are teachers in grade schools told me that kids that are in daycare or preschool for even a short amount of time each week are better prepared for school.

    Through the journey you have been on with Quinn through speech therapy and surgeries, to showing him what strong smart women are capable of, you are crushing the mom thing!

    Jenna – you should be ashamed. The LAST thing any mom should so is mom-shame. There is enough of that from society, we don’t need to do it to each other. Each family, mom, child, household is different. And that’s ok, terrific in fact. I hope you aren’t teaching your children there is only one way to raise a family and be a great mom.

  14. i already commented above but wanted to separately comment that i really appreciated this post! signed- a fellow working mom with an independent little boy of my own!

  15. Tina, I am so glad you posted this! I will be honest – there have been a few guest posts recently that rubbed my the wrong way (like the recent body shaming post). But this post feels much more genuine and the true Tina!

    Being a mother and making decisions for your child is the hardest job, and being a working mother makes it even harder. Not everyday is perfect like people post on IG or FB. Not all of us have the option of staying home with our children, and we need to work to support and create a great future for our children. Shame on those that try to mom shame you as you make those hard choices that fit best for your family. (Like someone ^^^…) Quinn is such an adorable and happy little guy, and he’s lucky to have loving parents!!

  16. I completely agree…we MUST build each other up as moms!
    Tina, I am a new mom of a 4 month old and recently returned to work…your words that nothing could have prepared you for motherhood so resonate with me. I read your blog for inspiration and that’s just what I get! I love that we will be examples to our children that motherhood and working can co-exist! Keep up the good work : )

  17. Holy farts on that comment from Jenna! She is the embodiment of the Mommy Wars! Being a Mom is incredibly hard and I’m SO GLAD that I came back to work and put my kids into daycare. They are well adjusted, respect other adults, play well with children of all different ages, races and backgrounds and get to do so many messy, creative, crazy things at school that I never would have set up at home. And as someone else said, when you decide to have children, you’re not giving your life away wholly and completely to them, you have to honor yourself and your marriage as well. I struggled mightily with postpartum depression and one of the biggest things to help me was to take up a new hobby (which has turned into a business) that was just mine away from my husband and kids. Mothers are not obligated to give up their own identity including exercise, iced coffee, and the internet! And for Pete’s sake your LIVELIHOOD is attached to the internet, of course you’re going to spend time here. Also, ‘your disdain for him’ !?!? All I see on your blog (and I’ve been a dedicated reader for years) is your true love and commitment to him. Keep doing you Tina, I think you’re doing an awesome job and are an awesome, REAL, savvy and intelligent woman and mother. Oh and I hear you on the whining all damn day long. I makes me feel like I’m having a nervous breakdown sometimes! 🙂

  18. I’m not a mom, but from my side, I see you so involved and so much a part of your son’s life, that I think you’re a GREAT mom. As a former not-so-easy child, those are the two most important qualities. Keep up the good work!

  19. Tina thank you for this post! This job is so tricky and you’re making it extra sensitive for yourself by putting yourself out there! Ignore the trolls. The inner critic is bad enough, we really don’t need any others!

    Meanwhile, yeah, we all have those awful awful days. Sometimes I want to un-ground my daughter ’cause her attitude over being grounded is so lousy I want to send her to a friend’s house! There are days when things are amazing and snuggly and we can laugh and share deep conversations and then there are those other days…

  20. Hi Tina – frequent reader, not so frequent commenter. Thank you for posting about real life, including how difficult motherhood can be. What’s that phrase – “the toughest job you’ll ever love??” Anyway, it’s good to know we all have bad and good days. You are right, not one day or week defines. I well remember the toddler years and they can be TOUGH. I have teens/tweens now, and these years are great, but can be hard too! Moms of littles – just remember to rest and take care of yourselves because you will need some energy later down the road too! It’s a marathon, not a sprint. 🙂

    Keep up the honesty – your readers appreciate it!

  21. I’m not crying, you’re crying! That was very well written. The little moments are what make it all worth it for me! Plus, even with the imperfections, we’ve created some awesome little humans!

  22. Tina, I’m not a mom but I have the most amount of respect, admiration and adoration for you and your family! I have never come across another blog that is as motivating as yours, so keep doing what you’re doing <3 There will always be people out there who have nothing nice to say. Their comments are a reflection of them, not of you! Xxx

  23. I think you are doing an amazing job! Motherhood has it’s good days and bad days, just like anything else. It’s obvious that Quinn is one happy kid and you and Mal are giving him a wonderful life!

    P.S. I am so tired of the ridiculous mom-shaming and judgement from people who obviously have nothing better to do than try to make other people feel bad about themselves. There’s just no place for bullies…especially with what is currently going on in the world.

  24. Oh my gosh Tina I am SO SORRY for that awful comment. Literally made me sick to read it and think how much her thoughtless words could hurt you. Please do not let one single word of what she said settle on you. This issue is clearly hers, not yours. I’ve been reading your blog for years because you are an interesting person who has grown in so many directions and you keep your content fresh and interesting. My very favorite posts are the ones about your family and precious little boy. I’ve raised 3 children, mostly as a SAHM because that is what I wanted. We gave up a lot to make that happen but that was our choice. Trust me when I say it was not because we were wealthy enough to do it. Little people will go through stages where there will be tantrums and meltdowns—you gave birth to a HUMAN after all. I made plenty of mistakes, as any parent does. There is no doubt that you clearly adore your little human and we all know you are a wonderful, loving, caring and committed mother. You and your husband clearly make your son your priority and you tend to your marriage as well. I wish someone had told me how important that part was.

    And who says “faff about on the internet” anyway?? Does someone not realize the internet is your job???

  25. My most favorite post on your blog EVER!!! I cracked up about the pics of kids happily eating kale on social media lol geez mine won’t hardly eat!! Lol My husband tells me all the time that any mom who constantly reasses what kind of mom she is and questions if she is a good one or bad one? She’s already nailed it! Because if she wasn’t a good mom she wouldn’t care….Peace, love and good vibes Tina!!✌

  26. What is the shepherd boy song? We sing a shepherd song before bed too! Love this post- being a Mom is such a roller coaster and I sometimes miss my selfish carefree life of before but also can’t imagine missing out if the immense love and joy of having my daughter. Crazy life huh?!

      1. Omg this is so random but if you guys love that song you HAVE to get the version by Elmo and Rosie O’Donnell. It is absolutely the best Christmas song that ever existed.

          1. It’s on this random Christmas album Rosie O’Donnell put out in 1999 called “A Very Rosie Christmas.” The song is available on iTunes, and there is definitely a YouTube video of Elmo and Rosie singing it together that is awesome too, haha!

      2. Ohhh! That’s a good one too! My grandparents sang ours to my Dad and he sang it to us and now we sing it to our daughter- I love lullaby traditions. ❤️

  27. Thank you for your vulnerability and candor in sharing your WHOLE life with us. Jenna’s words were hurtful and only reflect how miserable she must be. Hurt people hurt people. Your son is better for having a happy, healthy, devoted Mom in his life. Keep rocking it, so many of us appreciate you!

  28. There is always someone in the world who loves to drag others down…..I don’t get why people can’t accept others choices period. Unless, such choices or way of life are personally effecting them. Why give your opinion when (Jenna) its so negative. It does no good. If anything, use the comment section to share what works for YOU and YOU alone…everyone else is doing the best they (WE) can.

    I have 3 kids who are now 20,18 and 15. I stayed home with them until the youngest was 10 (able to stay home alone). They have had tantrums in front of grandma, fits in Target, and nights where they cried themselves to sleep on the floor because I refused to play the get out of the bed game for the 50th time! ugh. Kids are kids. Good day, bad days and in between…..

    Raising children are hard these days with so many others looking over our shoulders ready to judge and critize. Do you and be kind.

    Keep up the good work Ms. Tina…..you seem to be doing fine!!

  29. Tina –

    I really needed this today. Thank you. And thank you to all of the supportive moms out there. It’s hard sometimes.

  30. Hi Tina,
    Truly appreciated this post! Even though I don’t have children of my own yet, this gives me great perspective when we’re ready for that next big step. You’re a wonderful mom, and I love your dedication to keeping yourself and your family healthy and happy- even if it’s not always perfect and pretty!

  31. I totally have these days! I am 9 months pregnant and feel like I have less and less patience each day. My toddler is a love but you described it perfectly…. there are some TOUGH days. Thank you for being so real and helping me realize I’m not alone in this journey and that I should feel so guilty.

  32. I don’t know why I feel like I should comment on this… but here I am, 22 and no kids for the longggg for seeable future. My mom was a working mom and it was so badass seeing my mom crush her dreams. I loved it so much and it has shaped me in ways I’m sure I’m just learning. I’m commenting though to say how much it means when your mom says that this year is her favorite year. I’m obsessed with asking my mom (and dad!) what her favorite parts of being my mom is and there is nothing that makes me feel more secure and loved than my mom saying “right now. Every year has been my favorite. It just keeps getting better. “ love your blog! Sorry I’ve been lurking and not commenting!

  33. You seem like an amazing mother and kudos to you for taking time to take care of yourself by being so physically active and constantly striving to be the healthiest person you can be. This will ensure you will be around for you sweet son for many, many years, and I’m sure it helps your mental health, which in turn makes you a better mother.

  34. So I was reading your entyvio day post and then thought I have to go read the comments on this post. I am surprised you didn’t delete or in the words of a very favorite friend “scroll and roll” 🙂 You are rocking it as a career woman and as a mom! No one can make any judgment on the choices you and your partner make for your family – No one knows your family dynamics or child like you do. Side note, curious how you feel about expanding your adorable family?

  35. Love this so much, the days when I feel like a complete failure, I try to remember ‘tomorrow can NOT be any worse then today!’ lol that always makes me feel slightly better!!!

    Love this post so much! We are all in this together!

  36. Thank you for sharing this, momming is hard work and like everything else it has its good days and bad days. It is so reassuring to know we are all in this together and doing our best. Quinn is lucky to have such a loving momma.

  37. Reading this has given me a whole new appreciation for my own momma! My mom and dad both worked, very hard, while raising my sisters and me, and there was not one day of my childhood where I ever felt unloved or neglected. In fact, my parents’ jobs afforded amazing adventures and experiences for our family. My mom has always said that she doesn’t think she would have been as good a mother if she had stayed home with us, and I can totally understand that – her job gave her space, gave her purpose outside of raising kids, and gave her confidence knowing that she was contributing to our well-being in ways other than doting on us 24-7. She worked with many other moms, and I know they supported each other along the way. For what it’s worth, I’m 36, and still friends with some of the kids I went to day care with, and loved the people who cared for us. Keep up the good work, Tina.

  38. My kids are off on Spring Break with their grandparents right now and I really miss them. I totally understand where you’re coming from here. It can be so hard to be a mom, but it is super rewarding as well. Thank you for your encouragement. You are an awesome mom!

  39. Oh my. As I was scrolling down to add my comment I never expected to see such a mean-spirited comment on this very heartfelt and vulnerable post. But what I wanted to say was: I UNDERSTAND. I am a mom of a very spirited 3-year old, and while I love her to pieces and recognize she is the best thing that has ever happened to me, IT IS HARD sometimes. Sacrificing so much of my freedom, learning patience when it doesn’t come easily, and relating to someone whose brain isn’t fully equipped to act rationally on a regular basis, I sometimes just want a break. I’ve realized I could use some help recently and my husband has urged me to try meditation again. I read 10% Happier a while back (I recall you discussed how it really impacted you) but totally fell off the wagon in my attempts to implement its recommendations. I’m going to try again in earnest. Have you kept up a mediation practice? I’d be interested to hear if it’s helped you. YOU ARE DOING A GREAT JOB.

  40. I’m not a mom, but geez Louise to that comment about you “faffing about on the internet.” First of all, if this woman decided to stop reading your blog years ago, then why, all of a sudden, did she decide to read this particular post? Second of all, nice and wonderful moms aren’t the type to leave such nasty comments or say such nasty things to other moms. You do you, Tina. Quinn is clearly a happy and healthy boy who loves his parents very much, and knows that he’s loved in return. That’s all that matters.

  41. I just wanted to chime in that I think you’re doing great. My son is in daycare 3 days a week and I work full time and I have to say that daycare has taught him so much about being social and working with other kids. He’s learning a lot too. I have nothing but love for daycare and would likely have enrolled him at this point even if I didn’t have a full time job! It drives me nuts when people tear down something like that. And I agree that it’s so important to have your own identity as a parent. I know that if I didn’t do things for myself, I would be depressed, anxious and not able to be the mom I want to be. So you keep doing you! Keep up the good work!

  42. I wanted to comment separately from my response to the meaning above. I have no kids, and am still VERY unsure at 32 years old if I want any. If I were a Mom, I would be lucky to be a Mom like you are to Quinn.

  43. Oh boy, I was just about to comment when I read some of the previous statements. Oy vey is right!!
    Anyhow, Tina, I started reading your blog ages before you had Quinn and save your entries for quiet moments on the weekends. It is a pleasure to see how you jungle all of your responsibilities. Honestly, I live a bit vicariously through your adventures with one darling boy as I have triplets who are about to finish their junior year in high school. Those early years with my tribe were so very stressful and then incredibly busy that I revel in the fun that moms like you have with your son. Motherhood is the most important role in my life, but working as a teacher makes me a more complete person. They have always been proud of me just as Quinn will be proud of everything you continue to achieve as a woman, business owner and mom. YOU ROCK!!!

  44. Hey Tina,
    Thank you so much for this post. I’m a FTM to an 11-month old and she just had to get stitches. I have been beating myself up since Friday when it happened. I guess God was on my side and guided me back to your page. I was randomly looking at bookmarks for food/fitness I used to frequent daily and I thought about your site and found this posting…thank you so so sooooo much. I needed this <3
    -Donelle

  45. We all have mom fail times. I know I’m a very good mom and always have been, but I still have occasional bad mom moments (let me tell you, with a 15-year-old it’s amazing there aren’t more bad mom moments). Your love for your little boys shines through in your posts. All the work will be worth it when he’s an adult and you still adore each other and love to be together.

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