Our mind is a dangerous place. It can play tricks on our heart. It can confuse our spirit if we let it control us. It can spiral us into a lonely place – a secluded prison cell we can’t escape from. This can happen even if we are living out our best selves…but imagine the scare-factor when it’s during a time of sleep deprivation. Where you’ve already lost a sense of self. Where your body chemistry has physically changed. And the entirety of your day is consumed by literally having the life sucked out of you.
This is called motherhood. My best self – my worst self. The self I’ve always imagined I’d be and never dreamt I could become; all in the same day.
I’m thankful that people are bringing light to the raw emotions that are experienced after having a baby. Post-partum depression is real – the question is, how long does it last? And how do we move past it? How do we console those experiencing it?
I sit across from a beautiful woman. Someone who I describe has “gracefully eased into motherhood. She’s a natural.” Yet, the outside picture is never the inside dissection. Tears fall down her cheeks and she sits in utter submission of brokenness. “Who am I?” “Why do I feel so sad?”
As someone who experienced it for what felt and sometimes still feels like 4 years I sympathize and cry with her. It’s a journey. Every season you experience new trials and tribulations, but also new beautiful joys.
Motherhood is the greatest bond a friendship can hold. A place where you can truly express yourself in all the rough, all the real, all the hard, all the tears, but also all of the highs, all of the milestones and beautiful joyful moments.
It’s a roller coaster.
It’s the most beautiful sunset.
It’s the “crazy” train.
It’s the greatest love you’ll ever know.
It’s the true definition of oxymoron.
You cry, sometimes for reasons you can’t put words to. You laugh and giggle in ways you’ve never experienced as an adult. You smile with pride at their accomplishments. You fall on your knees in submission after having to reprimand. Your heart feels like it could burst when you share words of affection and kisses.
Our highlight reels on social outlets surely add to the pressure of perfection. We can’t compare. We can’t judge. We can only support and lift one another up. When you see a fellow mom, all put together and smiling with her kids in the hottest trends and smiling – you know 5 minutes ago she wanted to pull her hair out and they were throwing a tantrum to get in their car seat.
We do the best we can. But what’s most important to know and remind ourselves – we all cry. We all feel lost and misunderstood. We never know if were doing good enough. It’s never as good as we dreamed up, BUT as always – there is good news! This YouTube video always reminds me in a timely manner – they aren’t judging us. We are their world. We are the best part of their day. And if we give ourselves grace, as directed by our Father, we will become the better version we hoped we’d be.
Let’s be gut-wrenchingly honest with our girlfriends. Let’s praise them when we experience our own and see their victories. Let’s share with them the moments that we lock ourselves in the bathroom and pretend we aren’t in there. Let’s cheers them and move into the next day of grace – together…
Because, let’s face it, our husbands can never full get it. They may try to sympathize. They may cradle our faces when we cry. But they can’t cure it. It’s up to us as women to hold each other through the process. This week,a fellow bloggershared a helpless day she had and she’s not even a mother yet, but her message was just what I needed and think we could all apply to this topic too. She said, “it’s ok to not be ok.” She also shared that our psychedelic mind can’t experience fear or sadness at the simultaneous time of experiencing gratitude.
So today, instead of crying, clamming up, losing myself, taking it out on my kids or husband, or escaping to a shower just to be alone…I practice gratitude.
Thank you Jesus for reminding me I’m not locked in a prison cell – I’m walking out one of the most incredible blessings ever given. The gift of life. The gift of motherhood. The gift of relationship. The gift of love. The gift of grace.
Kiss your babies tonight and know you are their person. Their best person. Their only mother, always.