As I sit here and want to grumble about how difficult my day has been with my kids: how much laundry there was to wash, dry, and fold; moan about the pile of dishes in the sink, and protest doing it all over again tomorrow, I’m reminded I chose this profession.
Being a mom is hard work some days. There’s a constant to-do list we’re expected to uphold. Our offspring rely on us for their every need, practical or not. Dinners need to be planned out and executed; McDonald’s is not an option seven nights a week. The house needs to be kept in order, faces need wiping, lunches need packing, homework needs tending to, stories need to be read, baths need to be given, Band-Aids need to be applied with kisses to soothe the hurt, and hairs need to be brushed. The mere thought of my “mom’s duties” overwhelms me some days to the point where I want to question why I chose this position as CEO of The Hayes Family.
After my list is completed for the day, the babes are bathed, the toys picked up and put into the toy bin for the 40th time, and I’m able to sit down for a moment, I look around at the stillness. I listen to the quiet that surrounds me other than the soft breaths I can hear in the background of my children sleeping the night away. I echo the day’s events in my mind: getting frustrated at my two year old for wanting me to hold him yet again, “Can’t I have some alone time?”, I howl at him as if he’ll understand my annoyance, to impatiently telling my four year old to hurry up and get his shoes on for pre-school. I even recall skipping several pages when it came to story time because I was just too worn out to read the entire book…again! As my mind slips into reminiscing my day, guilt creeps in.
I have often questioned my ability to be the true definition of a mother: to bring up (a child) with care and affection. Sure I can bring up a child; I’m doing it every single day, but with care and affection? That’s where I feel as if I’m failing. Too many of my days are defined as a momma who’s worn out and weary. All too often those days are followed by bouts of guilt as to why they were executed in a fashion that doesn’t grant me a Mom of the Year award. I have these days more than I want to admit. And the comforting thought? I know you do too fellow mom. I know you get overworked, exhausted, pooped, and out of gas as well; we all do as moms. But somehow putting on our, “I’m June Cleaver, it’s nice to meet you” face to the outside world makes the cover-up okay. Well, it’s not. Because then what happens? You become even more jaded, impatient, and burnt out as a mom trying to keep up with how you “think” you’re supposed to be by certain standards. We’re human ladies; we make mistakes every time we turn around. We don’t always have it all together the way society says we should or even the way we desire for ourselves.
I have embraced one word that turns my mistakes around and gives me that stamina to pull through yet another day that seems extra rough: grace. Yes, we receive more grace from our children than we realize. It’s that refinement that keeps us going, along with their beloved smiles, that gets us back on track again.
I know that I was put on this Earth to be my kids’ mom. My job is tough some days; what job isn’t? But knowing I was specifically chosen to raise, love, and nurture my babies? That’s priceless. So priceless I welcome another day, and another day after that one too. All bellyaching aside, I love being a mom. I have a fervor knowing I am trying my best every single day to raise little humans that will grow to be productive, respectful, loving, larger beings. I am the one called for this CEO position and through the clutter, confusion, and chaos, I smile everyday realizing how blessed I truly am to have the title of MOM.
As I pull the sheets up over my head to close out my day, I hear, “Momma, I need a drink.” In the silence of the night, I drag myself out of bed and fill his Superman cup up with water. I walk him back into his room, tuck him snuggly into his Spider Man blankets, kiss his soft, sweet smelling head, and say, “Thanks for the grace today Buddy, I really needed it. Goodnight, I love you.”
Moms, you are doing a wonderful job at this thing called “motherhood.” I know you get discouraged at times, question if you’re doing the right things for your babes, and even beat yourselves up more than you should. But know grace is all around you; whispering to you, “You are impeccable and superb Mom, thanks for all you do.”
As Mother’s Day is approaching, remember to honor the woman who created life for you. Maybe it’s even your grandma, aunt, or step-mom that helped raise you and needs the honor too. Honor her for her weary and worn out days. Let her know your grace for her comes overflowing, without hesitation. I know I will honor my own mom come the second Sunday of this month. I only wish I could tell her in person. But until we meet again, the gratitude and abundance of grace in my heart will have to do.
Happy Mother’s Day to every mother reading this. May you know how valued and loved you really are, through all the glorious days of your mothering…and beyond.
*Article first appeared in Idaho Family Magazine*