back to blog home

the Dr. AMy blog


Embracing the Mess

December 14, 2020

Hello Friends,

I’m sitting in a mess right now. Literally. I’ve got holiday decorations strewn about my entire house, half-up/half-in-box, and my table that I’m typing this from is littered with projects, papers, distance learning reminders, and paperwork to follow up on. And you know what? It’s going to stay that way until tomorrow night. Maybe even through the weekend.



Really, I have to let it go. We can do anything, but we can’t do everything. Whether you’re a working parent or stay-at-home (I mean we’re really all at home, aren’t we?) we need to give ourselves some grace this holiday season. Allow ourselves a little more space to let go of expectations and know that less-than-perfect is ok.

So, tell me, what imperfection are you going to embrace between now and the new year? For what mistakes will you allow yourself off-the-hook? What obligation can you let go? It’s a little easier this year – we have a blanket excuse – “sorry, we can’t because of COVID.” Everyone will understand.

  • All gift bags, no wrapping
  • Ordering dinners in so you don’t have to cook mid-week
  • Saying no to holiday dinners (who wants to freeze outside while socially distancing? I mean, if you live in Southern California, I’m in. Wait, no I’m not, stay put.)
  • Baking? I mean, do we really need more carbs in 2020?
  • Religious services online in our pj’s – why didn’t we do this sooner?! Every parent with a screaming toddler thanks you!
  • Distance learning homework – where was that link? Just send your kids’ teacher lots of coffee cards and meals delivered.
  • OK, maybe some baking.
  • And the elf…well, we already addressed the elf.

No, my cards are not created, nor sent. My tree is up, but not decorated. Just today I realized that it’s Hanukkah and it makes total sense why my friend, Robin, was dressed up on top but wearing pajama bottoms for online. Sorry that I judged you.

Let’s embrace the mess this year. There’s actual research that supports the fact that once we accept a theme or incidence as a reality, it’s much more tolerable. Then we can commit to doing something about it or letting it go. I say, embrace the mess. Let some things go. Keep traditions that really matter to you and focus on what you love.

Recently, a parent from my cohort from The Art of Imperfect Parenting shared this: Ask your kids what holiday traditions are most important to them. You’ll be surprised. Then choose the traditions most important to you. Let everything else go! 

Thank you Alisa!

May your holidays be joy-filled amongst the mess.

With compassion,

Dr. Amy

PS – Please join my newest Facebook group, Parenting with Intention! It’s an amazing community of supportive parents full of love, ideas, and honesty.
PSS – If you want to find out more about my course, it’s starting again soon. What an amazing gift to yourself this holiday season. Sign up for the waitlist here

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

become a champion.

sign up for my newsletter to get practical tools to build resilient children every week.

yes, please!