The simple truth about parenting we all need to hear sometimes
I have always known I wanted to be a mam.
Known that my heart held this space for these future children I just knew I would have one day.
And now, seven years into motherhood, I can hand on heart say that it really is just as amazing as I imagined. Better. It is full on and fun and it keeps my hands full and my heart even fuller.
But, and we all know this, parenting is also hard. Probably the hardest thing any of us will ever do, in fact. It is relentless and frustrating and scary and sometimes also very, very lonely.
But we do it. We power through, hour after hour, knowing that the hard days are, thankfully, almost always followed by really great ones. Tears are made up for by hugs, and early mornings made so much better by the snuggles you know are waiting for you at bedtime.
And the thing is, we have all felt the hard times – just like we have all felt the whoosh of love and happiness too. The trick, I think, is to stop being so hard on ourselves when parenting gets a little overwhelming – because it does at times. To all of us.
Which is why, I think, this beautiful Facebook post had mums and dads all over the world relating – and maybe, hopefully, feeling better about having felt just like this at times too.
It was first posted two years ago, but we think it's important to read every now and again:
Here is the text in full:
“To the mom”
“To the mom hiding in her bathroom, needing peace for just one minute, as the tears roll down her cheeks..
To the mom who is so tired she feel likes she can’t function anymore and would do anything to lay down and get the rest she needs…
To the mom sitting in her car, alone, stuffing food in her face because she doesn’t want anyone else to see or know she eats that stuff…
To the mom crying on the couch after she yelled at her kids for something little and is now feeling guilty and like she is unworthy…
To the mom that is trying desperately to put those old jeans on because all she really wants is to look in the mirror and feel good about herself…
To the mom that doesn’t want to leave the house because life is just too much to handle right now…
To the mom that is calling out for pizza again because dinner just didn’t happen the way she wanted it to…
To the mom that feels alone, whether in a room by herself or standing in a crowd…
You are enough.
You are important.
You are worthy.
This is a phase of life for us. This is a really, really, hard, challenging, crazy phase of life.
In the end it will all be worth it. But for now it’s hard. And it’s hard for so many of us in many different ways. We don’t always talk about it, but it’s hard and it’s not just you.
You are enough.
You are doing your best.
Those little eyes that look up at you – they think you are perfect. They think you are more than enough.
Those little hands that reach out to hold you – they think you are the strongest. They think you can conquer the world.
Those little mouths eating the food you gave them – they think that you are the best because their bellies are full.
Those little hearts that reach out to touch yours – they don’t want anything more. They just want you.
Because you are enough. You are more than enough, mama.
You. Are. Amazing.
The text struck a cord, and comments have been flooding in – from mums and dads too. Thousands penned their own response to the beautiful post, keen to share their own parenting stories and some encouraging words:
“This is lovely, as a dad of 2 grown up girls I can honestly say my wife may have been all these things at one time but the kids only ever saw her as a loving , caring nurturing and sometimes stern mummy , the small part I did was to try and be there for my wife when she did cry, or smash a glass, or want to blow off steam. Mums are amazing , and when we sit back now and think neither of us knows how we held it together , but we did,” one dad wrote.
“This is me…everyday. I am a single mom of two kids under 6. I work, go to school, and try to maintain a household on my own. I try and do my best…as best as I can with the cards I was dealt. If I’ve learned anything it’s that is okay to breakdown…everyday if needed…it’s okay to not be perfect. It doesn’t matter to the kids, just tell them you love them everyday. It’ll be okay,” another posted.
“I yelled at my 3 year old son the other day for something so minor out of complete exhaustion. I expected him to say I was mean. And I deserved that. Instead he said, ‘Mommy, you’re my best friend’,” one mum wrote.
Here is the thing, mamas (and dads too): We are all in the same boat. We are all trying our very best to give our children the best childhood possible. We are all allowed to admit some days are hard. And we are all doing a pretty damn good job.