Dear Exhausted Mommy,
I see you.
I see you over there reheating your coffee for the fourth time this morning. Or is that yesterday’s coffee?
I see you at the grocery store gritting your teeth as you hurl your toddler over your shoulder and pray everyone will ignore the world-is-ending shrieks coming from them as they launch into their second meltdown of the day.
I see you, embarrassed and apologizing profusely as you return a stack of library books that have been scribbled all over in permanent marker and are now missing pages.
I see you break down into tears in your car when you are just having one of those days.
I see you desperately trying to cover up the dark bags under your eyes with concealer but realizing no amount of makeup can change how exhausted you are from not getting a full night’s sleep in days.
I see the guilt on your face as you pull through the fast food drive thru lacking the energy to make a healthy home-cooked meal tonight.
I see the yoga pants covered in boogers.
Oh, I see you.
I am you.
And while being a mom is probably the single greatest joy of my life to this point, it is just so, so hard sometimes.
I recently heard the famous line by G.K. Chesterson stating “if a thing is worth doing it is worth doing poorly.”
And while I am taking this out of context, I’d like you to consider those words with me for a moment. Because in them I have found not an excuse for poor efforts, but an empowering and freeing truth about what it means to do the best you can when you are in a hard season of life.
And being a new mom is one of them. And though you may wish to completely give up sometimes, I urge you to go easy on yourself. Be gentle. Give yourself grace.
But what does that look like? You might wonder.
I wondered too until I came to this place where I had to truly learn what being gentle on myself looked like.
Where I came to understand how doing something poorly is better than not doing it at all.
Starting one load of dishes is better than not cleaning the whole house.
Eating a bag of chips is better than starving.
Brushing your teeth for 30 seconds before bed is better than not brushing them at all.
Doing ten minutes of yoga is better than ten more minutes of sitting when working out sounds impossible.
Changing your clothes and slapping on some deodorant is good enough when you can’t take a whole shower.
Trimming your nails is still worth it even if you can’t file, buff or polish those beauties.
And going outside to get the mail is worth it after being in the house for three straight days because you don’t have the energy to go anywhere.
So if you were wondering how other moms do it sometimes. This is how. This is what going easy on myself means to me.
Find out what it looks like for you. And keep on keeping on, heart full, despite challenges, knowing it is all so very worth it.