I was doing some research this week and came upon a website that had a pop-up, as so many websites do. I don’t have anything against pop-ups as I understand they are a necessary thing.
However, this pop-up made me upset. I was on a mom site. And the title of pop-up was:
It said something about getting tips and articles or something but the only thing I really could see was: Make motherhood look easy.
First of all, all the hacks and tips in the world could not make motherhood easy. It is an impossibility.
Second of all, I don’t want to make motherhood look easy.
Because it isn’t. The very way it begins isn’t easy! What would make a person think that carrying a baby for 9 months or waiting on the adoption process for 9 months has any correlation to EASY? Have you seen a 9 months and 1 week pregnant mom? There’s not much one can do to make that look easy. Just sayin’.
I don’t want to make motherhood look easy because to do so would be a lie. And I don’t want to live a lie.
For me to make motherhood look easy is a disservice to my fellow moms in the trenches of motherhood. What is really the point of making it look easy when everyone knows it isn’t!? I mean why pretend? It’s exhausting to pretend.
It wears a mom down.
And it makes her feel alone.
It makes her feel like everyone else has got this motherhood thing down.
What moms need to hear is:
While we don’t need to hang out all of our trials and issues for everyone to know, we also don’t need to make motherhood look easy. That is not your role as a mom nor should you feel pressure to take that role on.
Instead, let your mantra be, “Me too” when a mom reveals she is struggling. And if you are having a good day you might be the one to encourage another mom. If you see the opportunity to encourage a mom – run with it. I have been encouraged in several different ways this last week or so and it has made a huge difference for me. Let’s do this together. Let’s support each other!
And sometimes that means sharing a parenting hack.
Or sharing a struggle.
Or laughing together.
Or taking a week-long trip to lay on a beach somewhere. Okay, maybe that will always remain a dream…(I’m willing to let go of this one as long as there’s chocolate)
So if you see a mom struggling, remind her that she is doing one of the hardest jobs in the world (the other one is fatherhood) and so it is okay to be tired and frustrated at times. As a friend told me this week, “It’s okay to not know all the answers.” Can I just say there was sweet relief when that was spoken over me? Like melt-in-your-mouth-like-chocoloate-peanut-butter-ice-cream relief.
So. To all the moms:
Bethany, that was awesome! I love this article. I had a similar reaction to a bumper sticker I saw years ago. I reacted to so strongly to it that it became an entire chapter in my current manuscript. The sticker said, “Try Jesus”
This is so true. Years before I had children I was in awe of a mom that her words made it seem mothering was sooo easy. After having kids of my own, I realized that she really did a disservice to other moms! It isn’t easy, being pregnant with terrible morning sickness isn’t easy, but she portrayed this illusion that her life was perfect and everything was so easy. Nope – I prefer to hang with the real moms out there. Keep it real.