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How Does She Do It?

How Does She Do It?

The other evening, I had to run to the store. Had to. As creative as I can be, I was not going to subject my family to a meal somehow made from a can of tuna, ketchup, ranch dressing, and a can of black beans.

But I was feeling pretty good. I looked pretty good, my son and daughter were all cute and clean, and I had remembered to pack all the things necessary for a grocery trip and any unexpected diaper blow- outs or entertainment needs. I had finished my freelance deadlines while the littles napped, so I was feeling even more successful and productive. It was a good day.

But then, I saw her.

She was immaculate!

Hair perfect, great tan, a pencil skirt and lovely coordinated top that fit her just right, fantastic makeup, and even from across the produce section, I noticed her fingernails were manicured. She had a toddler about my son’s age in the cart, too.

How does she do it?

I compared my now schlumpy outfit with her “I work full time” ensemble. I compared her thin waist to my flabby tummy. I compared how well behaved and articulate my son was to her son’s behavior. And oh, look… she was headed to the organic vegetable section while I place nonspecial on-sale apples in my cart.

But then, I saw them. I don’t know how it happened, but in the midst of my comparing, I saw her feet. In extreme contrast to her color coordinated skirt and blouse, her “piggies”  (as my son calls them) were swaddled in white socks and trouping along in falling apart black Reebok flip flops.

Okay, God … I get it.

Instead of taking the long way around her to the dairy section, I walked past her. I smiled, and said, “You look beautiful.” And I meant it.

There’s something about motherhood today that has marinated it in fear, judgement, worry, and comparison. Our deepest insecurities tend to come under attack, and often, out of nowhere.

I haven’t figured out all the answers, and I’m still wrestling through my own, but one thing I have realized. Moms always need encouragement. Even as we compare prices of peanut butter. So, want to join me in looking for little ways to encourage the moms around us?

Time to overcome fears with truth.

By: Leilani Squires

Join us at for our parenting blog each Monday-Friday and for info about the Just 18 Summers novel.

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