To that mom putting her life on hold for the better of others. For the mom who is always home with her kids and is lonely more than she cares to admit. For the mom not pursuing her career or her dreams right now because there just isn’t the time or the money. For the mom who feels like she is the only one that feels this way, who feels so completely invisible to the entire world, I see you! God sees you! And you are doing an amazing job mama. You are the definition of a selfless woman. Putting yourself on the back burner and your life on hold for your precious little ones who some days make you want to hide in that darn closet and eat all the chocolate.
I know it’s lonely mama. I know how easy it is to resent all those things. I know how slippery of a slope that depression can be; staring you in the face with all YOU can’t/aren’t allowed to do right now. I know you literally lose your identity when you become a mom. I know all this because I’ve been there, because truth be told I AM there more days than I’d like.
I know some days, some feelings are so irrational you don’t even know what you NEED or what you WANT or even WHY you are feeling this way, let alone explain it to your husband or friend or mother. I also know just how truly, completely, whole heartily grateful you are for what you get to do! For being able to raise your tiny little humans. For being alive and well and having all that you and your family truly need for survival. I know how guilty you feel for feeling so overwhelmed, so tired, so worn out, so sad sometimes, because you know most people are aching to be in your shoes! How dare you feel bad when you have so many blessings right in front of you! I know mama because I’ve told myself those same things plenty of times. And you know what? You are ALLOWED to have those days! It doesn’t make you a bad mom or wife! It makes you, me, HUMAN!!!
We want to succeed and make a difference in life and have purpose and sometimes in between cleaning up the Cheerios and making another grilled cheese sandwich for the millionth time we forget just how important and special our job is! We are raising tiny little humans! And no, no one will give us a medal or a raise for doing a great jobs work (which stinks sometimes! I like medals!) But no one can do this job like you do. You are the heart and soul of your entire family. You are the reason it all moves and functions and God hand picked you for this task for a very specific reason. Think about that for a second, GOD chose YOU for this JOB! To raise these tiny little humans, to teach them right from wrong, to teach them all about Him and to grow up to be good people! And I know we don’t always get to see the fruits of our labor right away, if ever at all, but know that God sees it and remind yourself every day that YOU are the only one able to do this job! And what an important job that is mama! And YOU are not alone in this sometimes lonely journey!
Today has sucked, well really the past two days have sucked. The first day was my birthday and it was spent taking 4 sick kids to the doctors by myself, grocery shopping, a fever induced vomit from the baby in the paper goods isle in Publix, $100 worth of medications, having to pay to renew my tag and license (I mean who came up with the idea to do that on your birthday???), pay a red light ticket (gasp, I know I’m human and make mistakes), find out our car is on its last leg (like engine blowing up, no fixing it, gotta buy a new car last leg). Today followed that fantastic day up with cranky kids because they are sick, my 3 yo breaking out in a rash everywhere, school work not going as planned at all (we homeschool), the husband having to go out of town, out of state unexpectedly and leave me here with all FOUR sick kids, me starting to come down with the sickness (thanks kids) and being up with the baby all night!
Like I said these past two days have just plain out sucked! But as I sit here rocking my baby who has a 104 fever at 5am, feeling sorry for myself, I realize something…….. I am so blessed! Why do we all get caught up in the negativity of life sometimes? Why do we let Satan steal our joy so quickly when things get rough? I realized how much I have to be thankful for!
I am so thankful that we had the money to pay for the kids doctors appointments and medicine, I am thankful that the baby didn’t vomit ON me in the paper goods isle, I am thankful that my husband brought home pizza for dinner so I didn’t have to cook on my birthday and that my in laws brought me a cake to celebrate. I am thankful that we have such an amazing doctor to get us through the scary 104 fevers, I am thankful that besides these current infections my babies are happy and healthy because believe me if anything our time in and out of the hospital taught us was just how truly sick some kids are. I am thankful that even though my husband leaving me at this very moment was the worst possible time that I am married to such a Godly and caring man!
You see it is so easy to get caught up in how hard or unfair life is currently being to us, but sometimes we just need to take a step back and show our gratitude because there is always always always something to be thankful for! I’m not saying it will make the bad days suck any less, but it will help you to pull out of that pity party and accept what life has thrown at you right now and realize just how strong and an amazing mother you are. Also to remember that God is good and loves you even on the really sucky days. We have two choices we can make, to sit here in self pity and feel sorry for ourselves or we can chose joy and thankfulness and rejoice in all that we are and have. Which will you chose today?
Husbands, do you remember the way your wife use to make you feel in the beginning? You know what I’m talking about, that beginning love when you didn’t care who knew how head over heels you were for that girl. You didn’t care how unmanly or how “soft” you looked. ALL you cared about was that girl who made your heart skip a beat every time you saw her. The same girl who could make your entire face light up with just the sound of a text coming in with the hopes that it was her! You remember, that girl that no matter how exhausted you were you would stay up until the early hours of the morning just talking to her. Do you remember the way she use to look at you??? Like you were the only man she had ever laid eyes upon! You could feel in the pit of your stomach just how deeply that girl loved you with just one glance from her.
Now fast forward, to the present days. The ones filled with jobs, responsibilities, kids, hurt, harsh words that can’t be unspoken. Do you ever find yourself wondering “where did that girl I fell so madly in love with go?” How did we get here? She has changed, you have changed and there are some days you both just feel so completely far apart and disconnected from one another you can’t even fathom the love you once shared. You both have made mistakes in your marriage. You both have said things you can’t take back. You both have snapped at your worst moments and attacked each other and you both just know without a shadow of a doubt the other one is wrong! It is their fault not yours!
But husbands ask yourself this. When is the last time you saw your wife. I mean truly saw her! Looked at her with that passion and love in your eyes you once had. Saw and appreciated who she has become now as a mother to your children? This is not a bash on you husbands I promise, but what if you tried something different? What if you chose to see the good in your wife every day even on the bad days? What if you were proud of your wife again? What if you made her KNOW and the world know that she IS the most important part of your day? Do you think her reactions towards you would change?
You see as moms, and women, we desire to do this whole mom and wife thing to the very best of our abilities. But most days we are our biggest critics and beat ourselves up all day long over all the things we did wrong that day. And you know what one of the worst things is??? Seeing frustration or disappointment in our husbands eyes. And husbands I know you don’t mean to look at your wives that way! I know you are just as exhausted and tired and over worked and under loved as she is. I know when you touch her and she seems to cringe at that touch that you begin to feel unwanted and unloved but please remember she has been touched ALL.DAY.LONG so by the time you get to her the last thing she wants is to be touched more. Believe me when I tell you it IS NOT your touch that makes her skin crawl, at this point of the day it is even just the thought of ANYONE or ANYTHING touching her that makes her want to come out of her skin.
So what if you went back to making her know she is number one! What if your wife knew everyday how proud you were to call her your wife? When is the last time you built her up in love? Does your wife know she is your everything? Does she know she is number one above all else? If not I urge you to try it. Make her number one. Make her realize that everything and every one fails in comparison to her and watch what happens! You will see a change take place in her. She will begin to know you are proud of her, that you see her as nothing short of amazing and the simple act of you doing that will allow her to see herself that way as well! Remind her that you are her safe place, her protector. Show her that she never has to be worried that maybe you are agreeing with friends or people who may talk poorly about her but that you are and will every single time stand up for HER!
I know she isn’t the woman she use to be. And I know it may even be hard to like her some days but this mom and wife thing is tough and there isn’t a manual on how to be a good wife AND a good mother and believe me when I tell you she hates herself for failing (or at least feeling like she’s failing) at both tasks every single day. She begins to feel unworthy of you! Unworthy of your love, acceptance and proudness of her. So husbands, show your wives just how special they are to you! You married them for a reason and on her absolute worst days I promise no one else can lift her up quite like you and your love can. You just have to remind her how much it is there from time to time and make sure you aren’t falling into the rut of forgetting to show her every single day!
So here’s the thing, I love my tiny little humans! Like something fierce I love those little people. They are adorable and loving and learning and growing each and every day and I have a front row seat to it all. But there are days. You know the days I’m talking about. Those days where I feel like a horrible horrible mom, person even. I’m talking about those days where EVERY.LITTLE.THING puts me on the verge of an explosion. The days where all the noise, even the happy noises, start to drown out my own thoughts and I feel like the walls are closing in on me and if one more person says mom or needs my attention for something I’m just going to lose it!
You know the days where your husband gets home after a long day and catches you at your worst where you finally snap and yell at everyone and then he calmly looks at you and says “that was a little excessive”. (I can show you excessive mister, it has been like this ALLLL day and you’ve only dealt with it for what 5 seconds!) The days where the thought of being touched even just one more time is enough to make my skin crawl. And they are loving touches for the most part (my 3 year old is a lover), but seriously a human-being can only take so much physical contact in one day before they want to scream! I mean does anyone else have these days? Is there something wrong with me? Surely I can’t be normal for feeling this way! I feel so guilty on these days! The days where I just need 5 seconds to myself to breathe! The days where the day has been so exhaustingly long and all I want to do is crawl into my bed when the kids are all finally asleep and of course THOSE are the days the baby decides he’s going to wake up all night. And it’s not his fault, the poor thing has like a million teeth coming in and man that hurts but dangggggg mommy just needs some sleep and to not be touched!
Momma I am right there with you! These days are real and hard and tiring and make you feel so so guilty for even being annoyed, but these days are normal! You are normal! And it is okay to have a few bad days where you just need, you demand even, just a little quiet, or maybe just one less “mom, mom, mommy, mama, mooooommmmmmm” because seriously that would make any normal person SNAP after just a few minutes let alone an ENTIRE day! I see you momma, I understand you and I am right in the middle of it with you! Knee deep in days where I want to go hide in the closet and that is OKAY!!! We are normal! I promise!
So even though you are exhausted! Even though you may have yelled a time or two today or had a full on ugly cry explosion (I’ve been there and done that and it’s not pretty), it’s okay! And tomorrow is an entirely new day! You are strong! You are doing an amazing job raising these tiny little humans! And most importantly you are not alone! Oh and one day those tiny little humans will be grown and gone and you will miss this and be sad and yada yada yada (you can read all about those encouraging words in my other post, but not here 😉), that still doesn’t make today any easier or make you magically appreciate every single “mom” and that is completely okay momma! We don’t have to love every single minute of this mom thing, for real this stuff is like so hard! We just have to love those tiny little humans unconditionally each day, try our best and realize that we are not alone!
So I’m apart of the group MOPS! If you are not apart of your local MOPS or have never even heard of it FIND ONE! Or message me and I’ll give you details! MOPS is amazing and is where I started to find my tribe! You know those people who are crazy and a mess and loving and kind hearted just like me! (Well I strive to be anyways).
So this morning was our MOPS meeting and of course wouldn’t you know it the morning started out so bad! Like bad bad. I woke up late, I woke up to having started my lovely period, the kids didn’t want to wake up, one of the kids was sick, I forgot about our crafting project for MOPS so I was running around trying to get that ready, we were so late my kids had to eat cheese filled chez it crackers and chocolate milk for breakfast in the car on the way to school! (I know, worst mom ever right here) and to make it even worse I left my house looking like this………
To which I completely forgot all about until I walked in the door after MOPS was over, with a very tired, teething and cranky little boy, who thank the good Lord, fell asleep in the car on the way home. I’m trying to eat healthier and get in shape these days so I hadn’t indulged in the meal at MOPS and I was starving because I forgot to grab me a pack of cheese filled crackers on the way out the door.
So again my day falls apart…… I quickly scarf down a piece of cold PIZZA (I know so healthy) while frantically running around this mess of a house picking up and putting things away all while running outside every few mins to check on the sleeping baby (don’t worry we live in the country with no neighbors anywhere around and I parked right outside the back door), unpacking and repacking the diaper bag because we have to leave in 45 mins to go back into town to pick up the other kids, attempting to make the baby some sort of a healthy resemblance of lunch all while thinking “man I sure did fail today”!
But you know what friend, we ALL have days like today! We have all been right in the middle of our worst days and beat ourselves up the very most during those moments! I could of planned better, I could of been a better mom and MOPS leader and wife today but you know what???? I don’t have to be perfect!!!!! My kids think I’m the coolest mom ever because I let them eat cheese crackers and chocolate milk this morning, I stopped and had a genuine conversation with a friend who needed some encouragement, and my “diet” will be there for me tomorrow.
My children don’t need a perfect mother with a spotless house, my husband doesn’t need a perfect wife who has all the laundry done and who is feeding everyone healthy organic this every second of the day. As the wonderful Mo Mydlo puts it, all my husband needs is macaroni and cheese and sex and I’m the best wife in the world! But more importantly than all of this friend…… My God does not need or want or require me to be perfect! He is my grace, He is my backbone, He is my savior and He loves me no matter how much I may have “failed” today!
So today in the midst of all the failures I stopped, I prayed and I reconnected with God because that is all He requires or desires from me! I’m here to tell you momma that IT IS OKAY! Tomorrow is a completely new day and if you wake up and fail tomorrow that’s okay too because you have a husband, kids, friends and most importantly a God that loves you and never thinks you are a failure! Rejoice in that today friend and then we can all try again tomorrow!
So my family and I are at the beach for the week! The beach is my happy place! The kids have a blast and the extra vitamin D I get to soak up does this overly stressed momma some good! My husband who works outside all week in the heat even enjoys it because he gets to sit in silence in the air conditioned room while the baby sleeps! It’s pretty much a win win for us all!
Here’s the problem though, or I should say MY problem, with being at the beach. My body!!!!!! Yep I’ve said it. Most of the time I am sitting here extremely self conscious of how I look in this darn bathing suit. I’ve had four kids and I’m turning 30 this year and it’s all taking a major toll on my body. I workout several times a week, try to eat clean for the most part and really do what I SHOULD be doing in order to get back in shape. However, there’s something about having multiple kids and getting older, well and genetics (thanks mom), that just aren’t working in my favor anymore making getting back in shape hard!
Friend, I know I’m not alone in this struggle. I know we are ALL struggling with some type of body image issues whether we are 100 lbs or 200lbs and that is stealing our joy! That is stealing our memories with our children, that is preoccupying our minds with negative thoughts that just aren’t necessary. I realize I look nothing like I use to in my swimsuit pre kids! Yes there is fat and bulges where I would prefer for them not to be, but should that all REALLY matter?!? My husband loves me and is still very much attracted to me. My kids could care less if I was as big as a house, they just want mommy to play with them and be ready for their “hey watch this” craziness. So today I am choosing to not care! I am choosing to not worry about how my stomach looks in this bathing suit, I am choosing to not “suck it in” the whole vacation and I am choosing to embrace life, realize that I am making necessary changes to get healthy and that that process takes some time! I will chose to be and feel blessed for where I am and not let my body image steal anymore of my joy. Friend I pray the same for you as well! I pray together we can find the peace we are all so desperately searching for and cut each other some slack!
I recently watched a parody on FB a local church did of the song “wrecking ball”. The beginning of the song was funny and oh so true about the things we have to say as moms, picking up after our children a million times and how having children straight up ruined our bodies! So. Much. Truth.
As I was sitting there listening to the song, laughing uncontrollably, the song took an unexpected turn! It started talking about those adorable, tiny little humans being teenagers!!! That time when they don’t like you at all, when nothing you do is cool and then they grow up and LEAVE and wreck us in a whole new way. I was a hysterical crying fool at that point! How easy is it friend to get caught up in the everyday hustle and stress of this season of life that we forget it’s going by so so quick! To forget that one day they won’t be so little and annoying as to ask the same question 10 times in a row! That one day very soon they will be too cool to even want to talk to us let alone NEED us!!!! There will be a day when we walk into the house and they don’t come running and screaming “MOMMY” like they haven’t seen you in days, let alone even acknowledge you!
Friend I am right there with you! I get so frustrated and aggravated and sometimes count down the days until this season of life passes! When I don’t have to fight everyone to JUST GET IN THE DARN CAR! Where I find myself daydreaming about the days no one needs me to wipe their butt or make their lunch or fix the end of the world problem that is the wrong colored cup! But we have to try to stop and remember these days won’t last forever! These days will fly by us before we even realize it and we will find ourselves staring at our stranger of a teenager daydreaming about the days they needed us! The days when mommy’s kiss made any boo boo better. The days where they would jump up on your lap and push the buttons on your laptop and just giggle their little heads off! I know it’s not always easy to remember these things in the middle of those bad days when you just want to hide in that darn closet and eat chocolate all by yourself. But let’s try, try to be grateful for the spilled juice all over the floor, grateful for those little arms wrapping around your thighs ever so tight (and sometimes making you trip) and grateful for the moments we have with them because they won’t be little forever and they will always be the best thing to ever “wreck” us!
I was recently with my mother in law listening to a group of women give diffierent speeches about what they have learned in the 9 week course they took. One lady’s speech smacked me in the face! She stated that we ALL have insecurities. We are all battling self esteem issues, we are all beating ourselves up over worrying about others judging us or worrying if others like us! But the funny thing is is that NO ONE but us even realizes we are having these battles in our head! How true are those words friend!?!?!?
We let our insecurities steal our joy! We make up excuses for why a friend can’t just drop by because we are worried our house is a mess. We don’t allow ourselves to fully enjoy a day at the pool with our kids because we are so uncomfortable and insecure in our bathing suits. We decide to stay home instead of taking the kids on that fun outing because chances are one of those amazingly cute children of ours will throw a full on tantrum and we are so consumed with worry about what our peers will think! That they will judge us for not having control, being overwhelmed and looking like a lost cat in the middle of a thunderstorm! (But seriously though some days I totally look like that). Here’s a bit of honesty for you…… This is our Easter family picture. To an outsider they may think “wow she has it all together, look at what a nice picture that is!
I mean it DID turn out cute, BUT in reality there was a lot of “come on guys” and “just give me one good picture” and THIS is a more accurate picture…..
Hahaha still think I have it all together?!?
Friend if we stop and think about it, if we get out of our own heads for once and look around we would see that NO ONE sees or cares about OUR insecurities because they are battling their OWN insecurities! They are worrying that YOU are judging THEM! Why do we do this to ourselves?!? We are so consumed by our own “failures” that we don’t even realize the mom right next to us is dealing with the same “failures”. What if for once we handed those insecurities over to God?!? What if we decided to not let those insecurities steal our joy?
So today chose to let that friend swing by, and I promise they won’t care about the food stains on your carpet, or that weird smell coming from the kitchen, or that “pop of color” piled up on your couch (aka all that darn laundry), take your kids to the pool!!!! Make those wonderful memories with them that you will never get back if you miss! Put on that bathing suit and be proud of your warrior marks! Friend you grew an entire HUMAN in that body of yours! Be proud of that! That is no small thing and no one expects you or your body to bounce right back after accomplishing such a task! Love yourself so you can then love others! Let’s get out of our heads and our insecurities and chose the joy of life, of our friends, of our children, of all these blessings God has given us and STOP “judging one another” and instead start being there for one another!
So it’s daylight savings time AGAIN! The kids are going crazy because it’s dark when they wake up and it’s still light out when it’s time to go to bed. You are already exhausted with all you do on a daily basis and now, now you have to lose an ENTIRE HOUR OF SLEEP?!?!? I mean really are they trying to make us moms snap right now?? That was like the only hour I had available to shave my legs!!! (Sorry hubby there goes that now 😜)
I get your struggle friend, I understand how upside down this time change makes our days for like the next two weeks. There will be tons of whinning,crying and full on tantrums thrown. Oh yeah and the kids will have a hard time adjusting too! 😉
But what if just this once we chose JOY through the chaos? What if we chose to be thankful for another day that God has given us to be alive? To see those sweet smiling faces (that will eventually turn into demon faces when it’s nap time) in the morning, to have the ability to sweep up the Cheerios under the table for the millionth time, to fight to get everyone in the car and to school on time and to witness one sibling genuinely helping the other sibling with something? What if we chose to realize how many blessings we have? Every single day is a gift and a blessing from God!
But believe me friend I know there are just some days we throw our hands in the air and admit defeat and feel like we are failing horribly at this mom thing. The days where we can’t catch a break let alone get a shower! Where we constantly feel like we are always one (or ten) steps behind in our life!
But YOU are doing a wonderful job! You are raising the next generation of workers, preachers, lovers, friends! So yes this time change thing STINKS!!!!! But choose the joy! Choose to tackle the next few weeks until it becomes the new reality (although right when we do that darn time will change again) thank God for all he has blessed you with and give that mom struggling next to you who is secretly telling herself she isn’t cut out for this, she is failing miserably and her kids deserve a better mom, a big welcoming smile because we are ALL in that same place friend and we could all use a little encouragement from one another every now and then!
Being a mom is lonely but you’re not alone. I know it feels like it right now. As you are picking up the food crumbs from the floor for seriously like the millionth time or the toddler is having a melt down because he can’t have a cookie for breakfast (I get it kid sometimes I would love a cookie for breakfast myself). All while you are juggling a hundred different things in your arms, screaming “just put your shoes on” to the easily distracted 4 year old for the millionth time to try and get out the door on time JUST ONCE!
As you sit in your car to breathe for a split second and look in the rear view mirror and see all those mostly happy carefree faces (except the toddler who is still crying over that darn cookie) and think “man I suck at this”. Friend I’ve been there! I’m there right this very second! Motherhood is lonely sometimes.
There are days where you can barley even human let alone make time for friends or something for just yourself. I get it! The husband is at work A LOT (providing for your family of course) leaving you with the majority of your conversations including Minions or Team Umizoomi and the days start to run together and you find yourself in this never ending, constantly on repeat cycle and sometimes find yourself thinking “why?” Then that guilt hits you like a ton of bricks! This is your life, the one you chose, the one you’ve always wanted so how dare you feel tired or overwhelmed or like running and screaming for the hills?!?!?!?
Listen to me and HEAR me, ITS OKAY!!!! You are not alone, you are allowed to have bad days! You are doing a GREAT job! This parenting thing is HARD and TIRING and definitely lonely at times. Please take comfort knowing YOU ARE NOT ALONE! We all have those bad days and guess what? Those bad days do not define us! They do not mark us forever as being the mom who couldn’t keep it all together! Because tomorrow is a new day and tomorrow may be better. And if tomorrow isn’t better, if tomorrow is another “I want to pull my hair out” kind of day then THAT’S OKAY too! You are a rockstar! You are a magician who can multitask, juggle and keep tiny little humans alive like it’s nobody’s business! You seriously ROCK and those tiny little humans adore you and think you are pretty much perfect! And in the middle of all this crazy beautiful chaos know that you are NOT ALONE!