One thing I've noticed since becoming a mother almost 9 (?!) years ago is the call to be authentic. I think in the very recent past, mothers have felt this immense pressure (inward and outward) to be perfect - to balance it all, have it all together. This still exists, especially the internal struggle. I struggle with this but I have also noticed a shift.
WE ARE TIRED!
I am tired of having it all together, of looking picture perfect but feeling like a mess, of hiding my laundry or dishes or struggles, of not balancing anything and of letting some things just fall. I hear this from friends over and over again of how exhausting this facade is. I've heard plenty of my friend moms say that they are over it.
No longer will we be fake. No more plastic smiles and "I'm fine" when it's not true. No more acting like our kids don't throw tantrums and drive us up the wall sometimes. It's time for us to stop putting dirty dishes in the oven and hiding the laundry when company comes. Quit worrying about the dust - no one is looking (and if they are, hand them a microfiber cloth and let them dust)!
This life is super hard but the pressures to be Super Mom make it harder. Your kids already think you're Super Mom! And you are! If you are in there changing diapers, wiping boogers and tears, fixing toys and broken hearts, feeding them, clothing them, disciplining them, and shepherding them toward Jesus - you are. You are Super Mom!
So let the dishes soak (or get a dishwasher if you can; it's amazing) and allow the clothes to get wrinkly in the basket. It's ok. As I sit and watch my boys who aren't babies any longer it's really clear to me that this childhood business is short. As I rock our new baby girl to sleep day in and day out, I'm thankful for this perspective. I missed out on that when the boys were young but I won't any more. I won't waste time being fake and pretending to have it all together. I'm still figuring this motherhood stuff out and that's ok. I'll learn and God will cover what I mess up.
Be gentle to yourself (and forgive me if this is a babbling mess; the kids stole my brain!).
|image via Amazon.com|
Read more encouraging letters like this one in the new book "The Mother Letters: Sharing the Laughter, Joy, Struggles, and Hope" by Amber C. Haines and Seth Haines. This book has really encouraged me this last week of reading it. There were so many things I wanted to write down so I wouldn't forget them. To enjoy motherhood, to slow things down, to remember and not worry, to be kind to others and myself. So much in this book! Get a copy for yourself or a friend (or both) for Mother's Day.
I really appreciated how beautiful the book is aesthetically and how it's not a huge chunk of anything to read so even super overwhelmed moms can read some and be encouraged. This is real advice and reminders from real moms just like me and probably you. I don't know if it always takes a village to raise a kid but it definitely takes a village to live in this world. I'm so thankful for the technology that allows mothers to be connected through books and blogs while deep in the trenches of motherhood.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in order to write an honest review. Others' opinions may differ and that's ok.