There are very few things in life that are as game-changing for a woman as becoming a mom.
And while motherhood is the beginning of many things- most of them great- one thing in particular that moms face is the ability to feel both simultaneously overwhelmed and alone.
I see the term “mommy blog” being thrown around on the interwebs, and it is sometimes done so with unpleasant connotations. I have even read others mentioning how it’s completely par for the course for a woman to pop out kids, and then sign up for a blog, much to their vexation. It comes with the territory.
Soon, that woman will be writing about breast feeding, potty training and poop accidents. I can certainly understand the hesitation on the part of non parents. If you’re not a parent yet, why would any of the previously mentioned topics sound even remotely appealing for daily reading?
But for a mother who is feels like she is sinking, who feels disenchanted, who is adjusting, and who feels like she is short on friends who understand just what she is going through and up to her eyeballs in diaper rash and spit up…
A blog just might be heaven sent.
My first six months of being a full-time stay at home mom to two children was an uphill climb. On top of adjusting to being a parent of two, recovering from a c-section and nursing a
punk annoying difficult tricky baby, I also began the delicate balancing act of trying to get it ALL done.
It was much harder than I had ever imagined. On paper, keeping the house from burning down or growing ample amounts of mold while keeping two children happy, fed and safe sounds like it wouldn’t be that big of a deal. Actually, come to think of it, even on paper it sounds ridiculous.
I started blogging (again) in the fall of 2011. I wasn’t quite sure which angle I would approach the blogging sphere from, or if anyone would even care about what I had to say. I was blogging just to blog.
Blogging was an outlet for me, a place to relate some of my frustrations and to savor my joys in parenting, but mostly to vent. And it wasn’t long into my new adventure before I was burnt out and discouraged. This became apparent in my writing.
A dear friend of mine sent me a link to a blog post, thinking that it might be something I needed to hear. I will be honest, I am a champ at not reading things that people send to me. I open a text or a message and vow that I’ll come back to it later. Then it’s been three days.
Sometimes, reading can feel like just one more thing to do.
But after reading the link she sent, I don’t feel the same anymore.
I followed the link to a blog, one that I still read regularly almost two years later. The author, Leslie, was a woman who was a stay at home mother to two children. Her journey to being a full time housewife was somewhat similar to mine.
She still worked after baby number one arrived, but left outside work all together once her second child was born. What was the topic in this post that was so eye opening for me? A ring of grime that Leslie noticed around her bathtub. It might not seem epic or important, but for me, it was. And no, the post wasn’t actually just about her soap scum issues.
Leslie wrote about her shortcomings. She felt like she couldn’t get it all done and like there were things that she was neglecting. And now, all at once, life was overwhelming for her. Leslie was just be real, just being honest.
It may not sound like it, but her words were actually uplifting and full of grace. Her reminder for other moms was simply this: that we won’t be able to get it all done. We aren’t perfect. We are just human. But more than that, she felt encouragement from the Lord that now she actually had the means to accomplish so much in her new focus of being at home full time. And that, in time, she would get there.
How beautiful is that? How can a post about bathtub grime make such a difference to someone? Or how can a post about toy trains melting in the oven, babies that poop in the bathtub or toddlers that don’t want to go number two on the potty, lend themselves to anything greater?
One thing that I have learned over and over about motherhood is this: moms don’t want to feel alone.
When you take those first steps into parenting, when you learn to navigate the nuances of motherhood, you will have times that feel alone. You will wonder how you’re supposed to balance everything that is on your plate. You will want reassurance when you make a mistake and fall short, that you aren’t the only mom who has dropped the ball. Moms who are unsure of their footing want to know that someone out there gets it.
I know a handful of mother’s who blog about their joy and struggles in raising children. And they have been such an inspiration to me. Every mother’s journey is different. We all hope and pray to reach the same outcome, which are healthy, joyful, adjusted and thriving children who become adults.
We all hope for a legacy. But we also desire to be understood in our new roles, whether or not we feel like we entirely understand it ourselves. We love seeing, and knowing that it is possible.
So for any of you moms out there who are blogging, to 10 followers, or 100 or 1,000, keep writing. Your words about play dough smushed into the carpet mean something to someone. And the time and effort that you put into venting your feelings may in fact speak volumes to someone else who needs to read those words.
Authenticity and honesty are attributes that you rarely find in this world. And, coincidentally, those are two things that almost instantly draw folks in to what you have to say. Don’t aim to go viral. Aim to write honestly.
And for the moms who are learning, who are growing and who are finding their niche, I promise that it gets better. And I promise that it is not all in vain.
“If you have a mom, there is nowhere you are likely to go where a prayer has not already been.” – Robert Brault