It was late. That time of the evening where everyone else had gone to bed, but I was still up. And I wasn’t enjoying the quiet time relaxing on the couch, remote in hand as I might have liked.
No, I was cleaning. And packing lunches. And wiping counters. And chopping vegetables. And loading the dishwasher.
And my mind started going nowhere good.
Ladies, you know what I’m talking about. I’m sure the same voice that talks to me talks to you, too. It starts by reminding you how tired you are, and ends by shouting that it’s SO not fair that you have to shoulder most of the load.
Because this load is so, so heavy.
If I wasn’t around they’d be lost. What would they eat? They’d all be so unhealthy. Goodness they’re so lucky that I spend so much time getting meals and lunches ready. Why am I unloading this dishwasher myself? They can unload this dishwasher. I’m not doing enough to prepare the kids for adulthood. They’re going to be lazy and entitled. Should we keep doing these activities the kids are in? Is it too much? Shoot…forgot to call and get my son on another wait list for speech therapy today. If I don’t get him in soon he’s going to be too old to see improvement and he’ll struggle with social problems related to it forever and his whole life will be ruined. DARN IT! I still need to figure out what we’re doing for preschool for the little one next year. Registration just started and slots fill up fast. Did I get the kids flu shots? Tomorrow I’ve gotta figure out where to get us all flu shots. Have they gone for their annual checkups? Wait…I think there’s a doctor bill I haven’t paid. I need to pay that. I haven’t worked on the budget in awhile. Am I still missing that invoice for work? We need to squeeze a Costco run in soon. I’ll have to plan for that. Maybe I can shave a few dollars off the grocery budget this week. I need to make a menu. First I’ll clean the dining room…why are there dirty socks on the table? IF I DIDN’T THROW THESE SOCKS IN THE HAMPER HOW LONG WOULD THEY SIT THERE? Wouldn’t it be nice if MY clothes just appeared magically clean back in my drawer after wearing them? If I didn’t do laundry, nobody would ever have clean clothes. If I didn’t budget, we’d have ZERO put away for college and retirement. If I didn’t take care of everyone, they’d be lost. If I didn’t pour so much intention and effort into these children, they wouldn’t grow to have any level of character or integrity.
I’m totally responsible.
It’s all on me.
I’m so important.
I have to carry it.
It’s so heavy.
IT’S NOT FAIR.
And then you go to bed and you’re seething, and you can’t fall asleep and you get even madder and the person next to you is sleeping soundly without a care in the world, because you’re the only one carrying this burden.
IT’S NOT FAIR.
But you know what else isn’t fair?
That my alarm clock goes off a full two hours after my husband’s. That I get to spend full, slow summers with my kids while he goes to the office day after day. That when something big breaks in our house, I don’t have to deal with it. That I never vacuum my own car. That when we went camping last weekend and the plumbing broke, I just had to sit and read a book while he fixed it. That I’ve never had to mow the lawn in our current home. That I don’t have to get dressed every day if I don’t want to. That my schedule is as busy or empty as I want to make it.
The list could go on.
The point is, it isn’t fair. For anyone. And that voice that tells you how heavy motherhood is?
Well, that part’s true.
But when it presses in harder to convince you it’s not fair? That’s only half of the truth.
It’s not always fair for him, either.
Moms, we need to stop pretending like our half of the story is the only one that matters. Let’s try to stop with the ‘woe is mom‘ and ‘it’s not fair.’
Instead, remember this: Motherhood is heavy, and you are equipped. Keep at it, mom. You’re doing great.