I’m the proud – if not very exhausted – mama of two very loud and feisty little girls, Poppy (4) and Tallulah (6 months). Motherhood is a rollercoaster; these two are the reason why I’ve begun blogging and the reason why I never seem to get anything done.
My journey of motherhood has been both grounding and empowering, as well as a roller coaster of emotions. It has been beautiful, fun and hilarious, but it has also been messy, thankless and nerve-wracking. It has been challenging in all of the ways in which I expected (hello, sleepless nights!) but also in other ways that completely snuck up on me. I was completely unprepared for my profound emotional shift, and ensuing battle with anxiety – which I’m still, in many ways, figuring out how to deal with. That being said, I wouldn’t change a thing. I’m eternally grateful to both of my daughters for my new life perspectives, and I really like the person that I’m becoming.
The immense responsibility of shaping and nurturing tiny humans has taught me so much about myself: who I am, what I value, and what I hope for from the future. Of all of the things that I’ve learned since becoming a mother four and a half years ago nothing compares to the crash course it has been in achieving and sustaining balance. It’s a struggle that unites mothers everywhere; there just aren’t enough hours in the day. Motherhood is fantastic at putting things into perspective, and because there is never enough time, one learns quickly to prioritise.
Motherhood is hard.
Motherhood is bloody difficult. Can we all just take a minute to commiserate over this?
There is no shame in acknowledging it; we all feel it. There is so much pressure for us nowadays to “do it all” – and well, mind you – to say nothing of the very real challenges of parenting itself. I often feel like the pressure is coming from every angle. I have to be a perfect mother to my girls, a perfect wife to my husband, be excellent at my job (admittedly now I’m studying, but the struggle for working-outside-the-home mothers is SO real – check out @mother_pukka and her Flex Appeal campaign if you don’t believe me) and still somehow retain my own sense of self. Motherhood is definitely a juggling act, and it’s one that I’d wager even the most experienced circus performer wouldn’t be able to master. So, basically, give yourselves a break.
I have absolutely no time for mom shaming. We’re all hard enough on ourselves without the added judgment of others. Why do some women still think it’s acceptable to be critical? I’ll never forget an experience I had when Poppy was about two. We were in the grocery store and I was desperately rushing around trying to get everything we needed for dinner, and Poppy was having the loudest and most epic tantrum of all time. And I do mean epic. It was awful on so many levels. I was completely embarrassed, at my wits end, hungry (!!), and in that moment all I could think to do was run around faster so that I could get out of there as soon as possible. Then a complete stranger came up to me and told me that I was doing a great job and that she remembered when her kids were in that phase. It was such a simple and quick gesture but it completely transformed my mindset. My embarrassment evaporated, and I felt stronger and more like a kick-ass mama. I vowed that I would pass on this kindness if I ever saw another mother looking like she just wanted to disappear! Where am I going with this? This woman gave me seconds of kindness and compassion and here I am writing about it years later. Verbal criticism, bullying, and in any other way blatantly knocking another mother (person) down is completely unacceptable – but I feel like we all know that don’t we? But it’s the other, silent form of judgment that’s almost just as hard to bear. And that’s the silently staring but not saying anything kind. I mean, come on, would it kill you to offer a smile or a kind word? We really are all in this together.
It’s here, and most likely to stay. But if we talk about it than maybe we can ease the burden and see some humor in it. I have no wise words or anecdotes, just an overwhelming desire to flip the bird to mom guilt. Join me, will you?
Don’t just take my word for it.
I am by no means a parenting expert (who is, really?!) and the stories and anecdotes that you’ll find here are the things that did – and didn’t – work for our family. Everyone’s experience of motherhood is different, but there are some common themes that unite us. Often times just hearing that someone is going through the same thing can be enough to make that burden feel a little lighter, which is why I write about what is going on in our lives (not because I think that we are particularly special). If you ever want to see more of anything, or have something in particular that you’d like me to write about than please get in touch via the contact page.
Also, one of my favourite things to do is share resources. Like, Parent Co. If you haven’t checked this site out before than you should now. It’s my number one go-to for everything parent related!
* Many people ask so I thought I’d tell you: the name Luella and Rose comes from my oldest daughter’s middle name (Tallulah wasn’t yet conceived when I began this blogging journey) and my younger sister’s middle name. They are both strong women and my inspiration.