Motherhood – Being Present, Not Perfect

Hello there! If you are reading this blog post, I hope it’s because my business and my mission speaks to you in some small way. I acknowledge that this post has been way overdue, but my life over the last few months has been chaotic, to say the least.

To give you a brief synopsis of the last few months, my husband and I were catapulted into this new chapter of our lives by a series of unforeseen circumstances. Due in part to the global pandemic that COVID-19 created, we found ourselves searching for new employment opportunities that could provide my husband with career growth and provide me with flexibility as a working mom. I spent countless moments, days, and weeks contemplating our options as we slowly arrived at the conclusion to move to Florida. My husband would be able to travel less and be home more, and I would have the chance to plant my roots in a community that I could serve with all my passion. Dunedin, Florida called our name, and we proceeded with our decision, despite all the dissonance it created in my heart.

Here we are, finally settled into our new little home with our beautiful daughter, Ensley. I never could have imagined the growth that this decision would require of me. I have found myself constantly at battle with my conscious mind and my sensitive emotions. I am now a business owner. I am an organized, type A person. I am making these tremendous sacrifices in my financial stability as well as my personal life, moving away from the home and family I’ve always known. I am confident in my ability to change people’s lives by influencing their health and well-being. I am passionate about the community of patients I can serve, and I want to share these skills I have to improve the world around me…

…But all this passion and commitment comes at a sacrifice. Over the last few months, I have found myself distracted, irritated, and angry. I have been spending more hours in front of a computer and therefore more hours away from my husband and my daughter. I have shoved my phone or tablet in front of Ensley more times than I can count, simply to have five more minutes to reply to a time-sensitive email or be able to complete necessary paperwork. I have begged for an hour alone to run errands. I have complained about needing to take her to a babysitter to get things done. I have set aside my goals of sleep, exercise, self-care, and nurturing my relationships. I am not the mother I want to be for my daughter.

I write this not for pity, but to offer my voice to other moms out there who may understand these struggles. Modern society applauds women for being doers and go-getters, and I have no doubt that many of those women are accomplishing amazing things. However, I will be the first to admit that I am not great at this insane juggling act, and I want to be transparent with those who I hope to serve. Motherhood has transformed me, and taking on this new role of #momtrepreneur has even further evolved me. I do not want to walk away from this chapter of my life feeling defeated, so here are the things I am going to commit to do for myself:

  • Be Transparent – There’s no trophy for acting like everything is fine if it is not. I’m going to make an effort to ask for help when I need it, try to own up to my emotions, and say “no” to things in life that don’t serve me or my happiness.

  • Prioritize My Time – I must block out chunks of time (maybe nap time, if it ever happens!) for business and professional work, but then make a promise to myself to spend more of my “down” time just enjoying Ensley and watching her grow. After all, they’re only little for a little while…

  • Try New Things – Why shouldn’t we spend two hours going to the nearest splash pad, hitting up a new neighborhood to walk in, or having a park date with friends? Sitting inside and playing with the same 20 toys would bore me too. We moved to the sunshine, and we need to make the most of it.

  • Hold Myself Accountable – It’s way too easy to find a billion other things to do around the house when I promised myself I’d take a nap, read a book, or do that 20-minute yoga flow. It’s too fulfilling to check off tasks instead of make time for self-care, but that re-charge is critical!

  • Create Important Non-Negotiables – For me, this means a 10pm bedtime, healthy and home-cooked meals whenever possible, finding realistic ways to exercise with my limited time, and creating limits and rules around screen time (for both Ensley and I!)

  • Practice Grace – I am not perfect. I don’t want to be perfect. I want to feel accomplished at the end of the day, but being a good mom to that tiny human is more important to me than anything in the world. I commit to being kind to myself and being a mother who is present, not perfect.

To those of you out there reading my first post, thank you for listening to my story. I hope we can be on this crazy, unpredictable journey of motherhood together.


In health,

Dr. Erin