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Nobody’s perfect, and nothing makes that more crystal clear than motherhood (even if you were nearly perfect before procreating). Sure, you had your act together with your Pinterest-tutorial-organized home, daily cute outfits, and all the time in the world to hand-write thank you notes or simply move through your days with grace and charm. But go on ahead and try to keep that up once you’re the proud parent of a sticky tornado or two (or more!) who refuse to let you sleep this decade, have social calendars that rival Prince William’s, and like to intermittently lift your skirt up in public while making fart sounds. Here are a handful of things we will all mess up sooner or later, no matter how much we put up a good fight.

1. Stepping on the creaky spot while the kids are sleeping

Every home has at least one spot in the hall outside the kids’ bedroom, which—when stepped on—elicits a sound akin to that of plate tectonic action being played live at a Megadeath concert. Normally parents know to do their gentle leaping dance of avoidance past the bedrooms when the kids are asleep, but our own nighttime grogginess or pre-coffee creep in the morning sometimes causes us to slip up and take that one ill-fated step. Then the kids are relentlessly awake, and we only have ourselves to blame, dammit.

2. Committing a major hair fail

Braids are the devil’s slippery Cat’s Cradle of coifs, and evenly placed ponytails take more practice to perfect than getting a hole-in-one on Pebble Beach. Ever get crazy optimistic and assume you can trim bangs or buzz your kid’s hair in a way that looks almost professional? You cannot, ma’am. You are incorrect in feeling such optimism, for those are impossible tasks. IMPOSSIBLE. Trust me.

3. Not keeping perfect damn track of everyfrickingthing always

Most of the time, we’ve got our sh*t together. There is a flow chart of schooling, sports, parties, activities, and events in our phones and on our kitchen walls, making sure everyone is where they need to be, when they need to be there. But the clusterfuddle of Evites and emails and text requests coming through on an hourly basis means that some things will fall through the cracks of Mom’s sanity. This means that we will, at some point, arrive at a birthday party when it is over, rather than when it started—or on the wrong day, altogether. We will send our kids to school dressed like vagabonds, covered in sticky faded glitter tattoos on their faces with rats’ nests for hair, to make a point to them about owning their personal hygiene responsibilities, only to discover it was Picture Day. We will forget it was crazy hair day/school colors day/silly sock day/inane time-sucking stupid thing day at school or camp. We will have our feet up as we chew the best sandwich ever in a quiet house, when the phone rings because it was, in fact, a half-day at school and our kids are wondering where the heck we are.

4. Showing an inapprorpiate movie while guests are over

We called all the neighbor’s kids over for a gathering in our basement TV room for an evening of family entertainment. We start up one of our favorite flicks from our childhood, only to discover that PG meant something totally different in the 80s, and OOPS we just taught a bunch of elementary-school-aged kids a whole slew of new curse words and allowed them to witness what it looks like to get to third base. Let’s call this a “lesson learned,” shall we?

5. Botching a hot, delicious meal

We spent hours scouring cookbooks and Pinterest for just the right recipe our family can agree on, drop a fortune on the fresh ingredients during a special trip to the store just for that purpose, and combine it all as directed, pouring the layers into the slow cooker first thing in the morning. Every family member is told to be home for dinner, because it’s high time we all had a delicious home-cooked meal together! Too bad we never turned the slow cooker on. Better luck next time, right? (LOL–you’ll forget next time, too. No worries. That’s why cereal was invented.)

The good news about being a hot mess? You’re not alone! Check out the new book, I Just Want to Be Perfect, featuring hilarious stories of failure by me and 36 other women, to see what I mean. By the time you’re done, you’ll realize how wonderful being perfectly imperfect can be.

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Photo: Getty