27 Things You Don’t Have to Do

We moms are all about the to-do list. Homework, birthday presents, laundry, dishes, shopping, parties to plan, doctors to call, activities to do. I thought I might make a list of 27 things you DON’T have to do. Please DO NOT add them to your list. I present, in no particular order…

  1. You don’t have to be nice.
  2. You don’t have to be good.
  3. You don’t have to cook made-from-scratch meals for your family.
  4. You don’t have to feel ashamed about that time you betrayed a close friend or said something really stupid or had a bad year. It’s behind you, girl.
  5. You don’t have to hold your tongue.
  6. You don’t have to say yes to every person who wants something from you. 
  7. You don’t have to climb the ladder in your career. You can stay right where you are, or downshift, or try something new. Your job needs to work for you
  8. You don’t have to cut back on caffeine, drink more water, or get more sleep.
  9. You don’t have to listen to the 91 voicemails you’ve been avoiding for seven months. The world kept spinning, right? Delete them and move on. 
  10. You don’t have to spend your life trying to be as skinny as possible.
  11. You don’t have to say you’re sorry if you’re not.
  12. You don’t have to shave your legs, paint your nails, wear make-up, or straighten your hair.
  13. You don’t have to feel guilty if you like doing those things and they make you feel more confident.
  14. You don’t have to hold that grudge. There will never be some Great Tallying of Rights and Wrongs, and that anger will burn you up inside. Life is mostly about forgiveness. 
  15. You don’t have to try the new exercise program your friend is selling. You can go for a walk. You can do nothing at all.
  16. You don’t have to be happy every day. Some days are just about survival, and without crappy days, the wonderful days wouldn’t feel quite so transcendent.
  17. You don’t have to play with your kids. Set out something for them to do and sit down with a magazine.
  18. You don’t have to buy a gift or send a card just because someone did those things for you. You don’t have to return the favor. Say thank you. 
  19. You don’t have to “do the right thing” if it’s not the right thing for you. 
  20. You don’t have to run from your pain. Sometimes pain is meant to be fully experienced. Sometimes it has something to teach you.
  21. You don’t have to do the thing that’s killing you anymore, not if you can make a way out.
  22. You don’t have to Konmari a single damn thing. 
  23. You don’t have to be humble.
  24. You don’t have to figure out Snapchat.
  25. You don’t have to see that movie or watch that new show or try that restaurant.
  26. You don’t have to seize the day. 
  27. You don’t have to hide your power from the world. Let it rise, sister.

Tell me, what else do we NOT have to do?

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