Hello there, mama.
I’m sorry to bother you. I know how busy your days are. But I also know how much time you spend with a sleeping baby curled against your chest, scrolling idly through social media because you’re afraid to move, to make noise, to breathe too deeply. So I hope I caught you at a good time.
I want you to know that I see what you’re going through. I see the bad days. I see your struggles– not literally, I’m not Joe Goldberg. My heart sees you, because my heart has been there, too.
When I left my job I promised myself I’d update my blog once a week. I’d start sewing my own clothes. I’d meal plan.
Instead, I wake up every day, fix myself a cup of coffee, and then I blink and it’s bed time. I don’t know where entire days go. I fall into bed, exhausted, and wake up in the morning somehow even more tired than the night before.
My heart feels heavy.
I watch weeks go by feeling unproductive. Feeling like a failure. Feeling like a waste of space.
And mama, I know you do, too.
I know you see yourself as “just another stay-at-home-mom” and I want you to know that this isn’t true. You aren’t “just” anything. You don’t work less than any other mom. The women you see on Instagram and Pinterest and Facebook with perfect houses who do crafts with their kids, bake their own bread, are effortlessly glamorous, go on vacations, and have time to volunteer, they’re all lying.
Well, not lying.
They’re telling half-truths.
Something has to give. The days that they curl their hair and move the dirty laundry out of frame enough for the perfect mirror-selfie are also days that their kitchen looks like a group of college kids got high and tried to cook a four-course meal. The days that they take their kids to the zoo I can almost guarantee there were tears before and after the picture of little Paisley feeding ice cream to the monkeys. Probably also a perturbed zookeeper.
Perfection is only attainable with a tight crop, the right filter, and selective posting.
I promise you, you’re doing amazing.
Even on days that you don’t knit an entire sweater in one sitting, go on a road trip, prepare lobster thermidor for the whole family.
You are doing amazing.
I want you to take a moment to think of all the jobs you do. All of the hats you wear.
You are a teacher. You are a gourmet chicken nugget chef. You are head of the housekeeping department. A stand-up comedian. A musician (although you’re getting pretty sick of “Baby Shark” and “Narwhals”– please no more sea creatures). You are a pack mule, your shoulders sore from toting around an increasingly heavy human (or two or three). In a pinch you’re a seamstress of torn princess dresses, you’re a nurse specializing in skinned knees and runny noses.
They find comfort in your arms. Your heart is their home.
Not only did you create life, you are nurturing it. Fostering curiosity and inquisitiveness. You are a safe space for endless questions, thoughts, ideas.
You are not “just”. You are not “only”. You are everything.
I want you to have this tattooed on the insides of your eyelids. I want you to remember, on days that your head hurts from the sound of baby screams or your arms and back ache from one too many piggy-back rides, that you are doing the hardest and most rewarding job in the world.
It’s okay if the dishes “soak” a little longer (girl we know they’re not soaking, you just don’t have time). It’s okay if your clean laundry lives in hampers now. It’s okay if that bookshelf still hasn’t been painted three years after you got it.
You are a magician, a miracle-worker, a goddess. You are mom. And you are amazing.
Another tired, stressed, heavily caffeinated stay-at-home-mom