I can’t remember where I saw you last, but I think you were leaving the post office. You walked out carrying two packages in one hand and a baby in the other. Your toddler trotted behind you, waving his hands in the air aimlessly.
You looked tired and frazzled and the color under your eyes was shaded slightly grey. I hate to even say that about you because when people say that to me I know that’s code for “you look like crap.”
We need to come together for a moment of honesty. When I saw you, it was as if I saw a mirage of myself. Tired and frazzled and grey eyes are no longer a once and a blue moon “look” for me.
Now that is simply “my face.” It’s the mom face. It’s the face that looks like you had permanent ashen colored makeup tattooed on your skin, except no one would pay money for it. Lucky for us, we moms get it for free.
You and I probably wouldn’t have chatted that day, if it wasn’t for your toddler.
I’m so glad he was waving his arms aimlessly around in the air (my toddler does that too!) because it caused him to run into me. This is how we struck up a conversation that day in the post office parking lot.
Do you remember?
He ran into me and then you apologized for him. I smiled and walked over to you because it looked like you could use some help opening the trunk of your car. I opened the hatch and asked, “How is your day going?”
You smiled and said, “Everything was fine.” But I could tell it wasn’t. I could tell by the weary look in your eyes that everything was definitely not fine. Your baby was fussing, her cheeks were flushed, and she kept wanting to nuzzle and fall asleep right then and there, but she couldn’t get comfortable.
Then you confessed a bit about what was bothering you.
You were worried.
Maybe you were a little bit scared too. I feel scared as a mom some days. Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night. It happens all of a sudden. My eyes: They go from closed to bug-eyed in point two five seconds. I hear the faintest whimper of my daughter across the hall, and half a second later I’m standing over her crib. It always happens so fast, I don’t even know how I got there.
(In case you’re wondering, this is why our eyes are grey now.)
But you know what?
There is something that you need to know about motherhood.
We spend nights bolting upright and dashing to our babies. We spend our days in the post office parking lot with enough foresight to see every ounce of imminent danger our kids may encounter. Cars driving fast, rocks to trip over, and doors to slam on tiny fingers. We see it all. We see our baby sick with flushed cheeks and a fever. We listen to the doctors, and yet, we know something isn’t quite right.
We know all of this because we have a mother’s instinct.
This is what moms do.
They know their babies and what’s best for them. They know how to fix boo boos when no one else can. They know how to soothe their child through the mother of all meltdowns. They know how to nurse a baby with one hand and get a toddler dressed using the other. They know how to stay calm in a crisis. They know how to cook a good enough meal in under 20 minutes. And most importantly, they know how to make grey under eyes look damn fashionable.
When you feel worried and frazzled remember this: You are not a #MomFail
I repeat…you are not a #MomFail.
When you’re tired and weary and worried and you don’t know what to do, remember you are doing amazing mama. When others try to tell you how to parent and raise up your child and you feel confused, remember you are not a #momfail. When motherhood scares the crap out of you and you feel like you have no idea what you are doing, stop, listen to quiet whisper of your instincts, remind yourself of the positive affirmations for moms you know are true for you, and remember you are not a #momfail. You know what’s best for your baby more than anyone else on this planet ever will.
Want more on motherhood?
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