Mama, how many times do you say this to yourself? How many times a week? How many times a day?
I say it to myself all the time.
I mutter it to myself when I forget to put diapers in the diaper bag.
At the gym, when my squats aren’t low enough.
When I’m working on days when my children are sick.
When my toddler is asking for a snack, and I don’t have one.
When we are trying to get somewhere, and we’re 20 minutes behind.
When I’m trying to think of what the heck to put on the table for our next meal.
When the mom in front of me at Target is wearing cute boots, and I am wearing what I slept in last night.
When it’s 2AM, and the baby will. Not. Go. To. Sleep. All day, every day, I tell myself that I have failed.
I say it to myself, and what’s worse is I believe it.
A fellow mom noted recently that we speak to ourselves in ways that we would never, ever dare to address a fellow human being. And she’s right. The things we say inside our heads, the things that echo and rattle inside our brains as we lie sleepless at night… there are reasons why we don’t say them out loud.
Because they are wrong.
Because we are capable, and strong, and we are survivors.
Because everything is a phase.
Because we are the kissers of skinned knees and the soothers of hurt feelings and the power we contain in our two bare hands could jump over mountain ranges.
Because when our child is lonely, or hurt, or in need, there is nothing we won’t do to fix the problem.
Because we survived natural childbirth, and medicated childbirth, and C-sections, and adoptions.
Because we run households and clean and we cook and we schedule.
Because we run and we lift and we swim and we plank.
Because we stay up until midnight pasting shamrocks to green headbands or hearts to red headbands or stitching or sewing or completing dioramas.
Because we are there holding back her hair while she gets sick, or kissing the closed wound of an aching tummy.
Because we carry the wisdom of the women and men who raised us in our bones.
Because we love so deeply the ocean wouldn’t be enough to contain it.
Because our skin is a map of the journey that brought us here. Because we are beautiful. Because we are so much more than moms.
This post is dedicated to the women who remind me, every day, that I can do it.