Over the past three months I have done my best to share my life in the midst of several large stressors. I wrote a few blog posts about how things were going and when motherhood is hard. Hubby shared our goal for oneness in the midst of the chaos and sometimes I just couldn’t put into words what I was even going through.
As the dust has settled, I continue to process the past few months in order to truly give God the glory for the work He has done. Additionally, I enjoy reflecting and sharing my lessons in order to encourage others. Lately, I have felt pressed to let other Moms know that what you are doing matters. It is vitally important.
Several sweet gals have been making their way over to my house. Most are new friends I have met here or there. I look at them on the opposite couch as they attempt to take a deep breathe in the midst of talking. The kids are usually under our feet or in the back room playing. It isn’t exactly quiet, but we have made a way to catch up. I wait, I pull, I listen and in the midst of what feels like a safe place I hear, “I feel overwhelmed.”
Sometimes it doesn’t come out in those three words, many times it does. I am sure you have felt it and I have too. Many times over these past few months it felt like I didn’t know which direction to look. We have so many roles to balance. Mother, wife, friend, daughter, sister, mentor, coworker, ministry leader, the list goes on. I know for a fact the tendency to think that if the weight of motherhood was just a little bit lighter, maybe we could be better somewhere else.
I appreciate when a Mom admits she is overwhelmed, defeated, that she doesn’t feel fulfilled like she thought she would, or that she is expecting more from (her husband, her friend, her Mom, fill in the blank person/place/thing). Most often, I think many of us balk at the idea of “brokenness.” It’s an ugly word. It is too vulnerable, makes me seem weak, and like I can’t maintain or confidently do whatever task in front of me. We prefer to tell others that we are “good,” that “I’m loving these littles…,” or “it’s just a phase.” Something more trendy is to make light of the circumstances. To call our messiness “beautiful”, to make a zillion videos highlighting the things about motherhood we all experience, or to make motherhood the butt of a joke that we can all laugh at. Trust me, I totally get it. I too laugh at the mom videos and there are times I try to mentally power my way through the list of annoyances. However, I think there is a road less traveled and most of the time I find that once women take it — they are a lot more confident in motherhood and start to see some change.
This idea of brokenness is hard to swallow. It is tough love, but we have to start there. You, and I, are broken moms. We have all experienced it. Whether it’s the rage toward one of our kids, or the tears at the end of the day as we hand our husbands the baby saying “I just can’t get him to stop crying.” If you haven’t hit that point, I really want to know if you are human. For the rest of us, motherhood shows us our weaknesses. It shows us the areas of our life that we prefer to leave untouched. Like those white couches that rarely stay white, or the skinny jeans that just never seem to fit right — we have an ideal but reality often seems different.
At the end of the day, we all want to be better Moms. The key is that it doesn’t mean being better than “her, or that other mom.” We don’t want to stay overwhelmed — because let’s face it, the temptation to eat, drink, sleep, or hide (and maybe you don’t even realize how or where you’re hiding) is very real.
My advice to most Moms consist of several things, but I usually start with these questions…
Why bother admitting that you are/have been/will be overwhelmed?
Can you let go of the weight of one of those other roles for a season so that the weight of motherhood feels lighter?
Why has God made you a mother? Entrusting you with a life is no small gift.
I encourage you to write these questions down and take some time to answer them for yourself. If you are feeling like the weight of motherhood often crashes down on you, hopefully we can explore the depths of this sensitive issue together!
I’ll be sharing my answers over the next few posts!
With All My Love,
These photos sum up our little lady!