Lately, I’ve had a couple of instances that have reminded me how powerful it is to simply know “I’m not alone”. I am so thankful for the friends I can call to remind me, without judgement, that I’m not alone. It is so liberating to talk about what I’m feeling and so comforting to hear that they, in fact, have had very similar instances. I’m also thankful for various resources I’ve found that really speak to me- it’s as if they know me. As a mom and a human with feelings, I need these friends and these resources. They are gifts. So for Mother’s Day, I’m attempting to give you guys a gift. My gift to you is my admittance of what I struggle with and the places I go to be reminded I’m not alone.
When I first became a mom, I was panicked. I had no idea how to do this extremely important job, so I tried to do everything just as “they” said I should… I’ll only feed my kids this, I’ll discipline like this, I’ll have them sleep like this, spend this amount of time with them, only let them watch this much tv… You get the drift. And not only was I going to do what these experts said, but I was going to do it perfectly. I laugh. Obviously this didn’t work. I would fail miserably every time, and then I would feel like a horrible mom. “The Gifts of Imperfection” by Brene Brown helped me let go of the mom I thought I was supposed be and helped me embrace who I really was as a person and mom. And the thing I really needed to do to be a good mom was be OK with myself. This book was life changing for me. I also read her next book, “Daring Greatly“, and I plan to read her new book, “Rising Strong“.
Then there were all the times I felt alone in all the messy chaos of being a mom. I just knew I was the only mom who yelled at her kids and got impatient with them. I just knew I was the only mom who would plan a birthday party only two weeks in advance. I just knew I was the only mom who often forgot that very important form. Then I came across Glennon Doyle Melton. If you haven’t heard of Glennon Doyle Melton, you have to head to her blog Momastery immediately. She is REAL! Refreshingly REAL and I love every minute of it. She encourages us to own our messy days and does so with a warm, loving heart. I follow her on Instagram and Facebook and I read her blog. Everytime I see something of her’s, I’m like, “YES, SISTER, YES -THANK YOU!”. She is a huge gift.
Then there was the time in mommy-hood when my daily grumblings were getting the best of me. These were the days when I couldn’t see past the early wake ups and the constant inconveniences of the daily mommy-hood grind. “1,000 Little Gifts” helped me get out of “my grump slump” and helped change my perspective. Now when I can feel the grumbles coming, I remember the things I learned in “1,000 Little Gifts“.
And then there was the time that I realized that something strange had happened to me- all of a sudden, I am a total nervous nelly! After having my boys, I’m no longer “care free Carly”. I’m just “oh no, what if this happens to them or what if that happens to them, Carly”. Well, I’m not totally cured of this, but “Calm My Anxious Heart” helped me put these thoughts into perspective. In fact, I think I need to read it again. Ha!
To all of you mama’s out there, the struggle is real. I’m not alone; You’re not alone. Lots of love to all of you! Happy Mother’s Day!
Photos by Candid Chic Photography