The days are long but the years are short.
Motherhood is a high and holy calling.
I know this, too.
Motherhood is a privilege.
Got it, thanks.
I know that you’re supposed to look on the bright side. I know that “fake it ‘till you make it” is a real thing. I know that gratitude is healthy. I know that obsessing over the negative is dangerous.
But even so, in my darkest moments of motherhood, let me be clear. I don’t want your positivity.
In all honestly, it’s not helpful. And here’s why.
The light of your positivity juxtaposed with my struggles only highlights how dark my reality feels right now. How far away I am from hope. How impossible it seems to be anywhere near where you are.
Imagine this. You wake in the middle of the night and make your way to the bathroom, navigating around the furniture easily because you can make out the shadows even in the dead of night. You flip the switch and are momentarily blinded; when you turn the light back off, the darkness in comparison is pure black. Formless. Empty. And you walk back across the room banging your toe on the corner of the dresser and tripping over things on the floor and fall back into bed wondering why you ever bothered to turn the light on in the first place.
I know you mean well, and I know you don’t want to hear it, but that’s exactly how it feels.
Just because something works for you doesn’t mean it will work the same for me. Instead of needing positivity, I need validation.
Validation that yes, this isn’t easy. Validation that yes, your load seems impossible to bear. Validation that yes, I understand why this season seems so dark.
What I don’t need is guilt over how I’m feeling. Because my feelings are real.
Please know that even if it doesn’t look like it to you, I’m doing my best. I’m navigating the shadows. Stepping over the toys. Avoiding the furniture.
And the simple act of you coming beside me and loving me through the darkness by validating my experience feels like turning on a small lamp in the corner of the room. Not enough to blind me, but enough to bathe me in a warm, gentle glow.
It lets me know that you love and accept me even in my darkness – not just on the condition that I’m coming out of it. Rest assured I don’t want to stay here permanently, but my movement needs to be on my terms.
And your positivity really, really doesn’t help.