I want to make sure you know before reading this, that whether you have 1 child or 12 children, we all have moments where we become an overwhelmed mother. Don’t feel like because I talk about having six kids close together, it means that you can’t relate or need to feel bad for relating. One thing that I’ve learned is that whatever stage we are in, that is the hardest place we’ve been as a mother. It was hard when I had one. It was a different hard when I had four. We all have hard, and we can relate without putting ourselves down for having different hard things.
Dear friend (aka overwhelmed mother),
You know what that moment is like. The one where the day seems to be crashing down around you. Dinner isn’t even started, the breakfast dishes are still everywhere. The floor is sticky, the kids are running around in pajamas, and you feel like you don’t have control of anything. Someone is screaming for you or at you, or possibly both. Sometimes motherhood just becomes overwhelming.
I’ve had that moment what feels like a million times over. Motherhood has been something that has not come as naturally as I anticipated when I was a older teenager/young adult. The patience I once felt like I had seems to have disappeared. Having six kids in the span of seven years has been a great way to see how patient I actually am, or rather the LACK of patience I actually have. For so many years I had a baby, a toddler and a preschooler. The days were oh so long. Everyone told me I’d miss it someday (I’m still waiting to miss it and my baby is in school now).
I had, and still have, these moments where it all just becomes so overwhelming to me. The kids are so loud sometimes, the house just won’t stay picked up, the laundry is 5-6 loads deep in various stages, and everyone is asking me questions. It is in these moments where I just need to step away from the chaos and lock myself in my room and have a good cry, and a talk with God. Almost every time I start by saying, “How am I supposed to do this? Why did they need to come so close together? It’s so hard having them so close together, and there are so many of them!”
As I calm down and try to be still and listen, it is in these moments when my frustration calms, that I can feel the help and comfort I need. I feel the answer to my questions and frustrations. I have been given the kids I have, in the span I have because He knows that I can do it, and I am given that reassurance too.
As their mother, I am the one that is supposed to teach them, help them, walk with them, learn from them. The quiet whisper inside tells me, “You are enough for them. You can do it. Get back up, and keep trying, I am with you.” With this reassurance I am able to go. I am able to pick up the house, listen more carefully to the many voices calling me. I am able to calm the frustrated child. The patience I used to have, shines through a little bit.
Through all the struggle, and all the chaos, we can find peace. We can find the reminder within us that we are doing okay. There is a voice that may be quiet and seem hidden, but it is there and it will remind you that you are enough. It’s there. Try your hardest to let it come through and bring the light you need. Stop letting the negative voices cover and hide it. You are doing your best.
Motherhood is HARD.
Some days will be easier than others. However, as you go about your day, picking up the same messes you’ve picked up 200 other times that day, being a referee AGAIN, carpooling, emptying the dishwasher, filling the dishwasher, collecting spit-up on clothes, and changing blown out diapers, realize that all these are being done with love (even if it’s frustrated love) by you, and when you step back you will realize you are constantly serving your family. Acknowledge that about yourself. Notice that you’re serving and helping your kids do things they can’t do themselves (or selectively forget how to do). You get the opportunity to (re)teach them skills or just how to be a nice person in this world.
My dear friend, you may feel like an overwhelmed mother, but please, please remember that you are loved beyond measure. You are needed more than you realize. You are doing beautiful things. You’ve got this.
Take a moment to look yourself in the eyes and say out loud, “I AM ENOUGH,” and believe it, because you are!