I Give You Permission: To Struggle
Last week as I was walking through the grocery store, I overheard two women talking. One of the women had two very rambunctious kids around 3-5 with her, and a tiny infant. She said to the other woman, “These kids are just sucking the life out of me. I feel like I can barely keep moving.”
How many of us have felt that way? How many of us have felt the freedom to admit that? I wanted to run up to that woman and give her a pat on the back. I wanted to tell her, “You have permission to feel this way!” And you know what? So do YOU!
Today, I am giving you permission to not have it all together. It’s okay to be the mom who feels like her world is spinning out of control. It’s okay to be the mom struggling to keep it together. Perfection as a mother is NOT the goal…it’s never going to happen. (And it doesn’t happen for ANYONE!)
But so many of us get bogged down by comparison, insecurity, and fear. We perceive everyone else to be living in an alternate universe where kids never make messes or have fits, and laundry magically folds itself. EVERY mom struggles. Every mom has bad days. Some of us have bad weeks.
So many of us wake up to the sound of our toddler running down the hallway and just long to stay in bed for five more minutes. On days when our kids seem to have boundless energy and an undying need to watch Nick Jr. until their eyeballs fall out, we start counting down the hours until bedtime around 11 am. Other days, we begin to feel like our life is about nothing more than diapers, laundry, and picking up toys. We get bogged down in the monotony of motherhood and can even begin to feel resent. We have very REAL and VALID feelings. We’re tired, stressed, and daily pushed beyond normal expectations for any one person. We never get a break, can’t take sick days, and hold our families together. And heaven forbid we ever let anyone know we’re human.
Sanctimommy and her cronies are quick to look down on any and all moms who admit defeat. You mention you’re having a bad day on Facebook and BAM! Within seconds you’ve got twelve people telling you to cherish every blessed moment. “They’ll be gone before you know it.” And like that, our insecurities begin to mount and we begin to believe that something must be wrong with us. We must be bad moms for feeling anything close to frustration, exhaustion, or heave forbid…boredom. If Mrs. I’m Better Than You isn’t enough, we read through the status updates of our friends and bloggers and see all of the pinteresty crafts, outings to the park, and comments like, “Loving my little family today!” and we think….”Oh wow…I must really be awful.” We forget that social media is written with a highlighter. People aren’t all that interested in saying, “It’s 4pm and I’m still in my pajamas!” or “Made an incredible dinner tonight! Corn dogs and tater tots!” But those types of comments, are so much closer to the reality that we all live in. We just don’t admit it. We’re too afraid to admit we are REAL.
Add in the pressures from the media, your family, friends, and the added fun of trying to live up to crazy expectations, and it’s no wonder the world is full of road-weary moms feeling as though they’ll never be enough. I’m here to assure you today that you are enough, chaos and all. You in all of your faults, your up and down days, and your never-ending struggle to get your stuff together, is enough. You are a crazy-awesome mom and it is OKAY to have a hard time. It is okay to admit that being a mom is a hard job…world’s hardest! So, cut yourself a break. Tune out the judgements from others that expect nothings short of blissful 50’s sitcom perfection. Motherhood is raw, dirty, hectic, tedious, and tiring. (Yes, it’s wonderful…BUT, you are allowed to admit the other things…the truths we all know but are scared to say out loud!)
Rest easy, knowing that no one has it all together. No mom has a good day every day. We all struggle. No one is Supermom…we’re all just chasing her.
Until next time, stay honest, keep it real, give yourself a break, and remember that you have my permission.
If this post resonated with you, you may want to check out the other “I Give You Permission” Posts:
I Give You Permission : Bottle-Feeding (One of my MOST widely shared posts! )