Then there’s this. This other side of motherhood. The one that nobody else sees.
Those moments when you think you might be invisible…and then you wish you were so that at least you could drink your coffee in silence.
Those moments when your exasperated screams make you guilty, when you skip pages in their book because Dr. Seuss rhymes are just not what you want to do right now, when you say “just a minute” and hope they’ll forget to come back.
Those moments you find yourself crying over the washing machine and thinking that no one has EVER been as terrible a mother as you. When you wonder how everyone else is doing it right… and you’re doing it so totally wrong.
Have you been there? I have. Many times.
But you and I, we’ve been there for those other moments, too. All those tiny little nothing moments that fill our hearts, the ones that don’t make it onto social media, and maybe not even spoken out loud. The smiles, the sleepy cuddles, the impossibly long eyelashes. The way they say “I love you, Mama,” and you know they mean it with every part of their little hearts. The way they want to chat about their day, and tell you everything that matters in their world. Those moments when a rush loves comes over and makes every vomit-soaked, teething cry, toddler tantrum, uneaten meal, and sleepless night feel worth it.
The other day, I was talking with another mother, whose kids are older now, and she told me, “You’ll miss the hugs and kisses, and as unbelievable as it sounds, you’ll miss the noise!”
It made me stop and think. Moments, good and bad, are part of every life. But this motherhood thing is about much more than a moment. It’s about a lifetime of moments that are shaping the hearts of my children, and in the meantime, also shaping my own.
This is why I look for the good, why I share the good – why I am one of those people that loves that silly chain-mail-esque “Love Your Spouse” challenge, and all the sweet, sappy love notes people want to share with the world.
Not to be fake. Not to say that the bad moments aren’t there. But to acknowledge and remember always that the good is all around.
Today and every day… I choose joy.
I choose love.
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