I tend to
hate ignore advice. I don’t know why, but there is this part of me deep inside that puts walls up anytime anyone tries to tell me anything. My independent spirit screams out at them that I don’t need help, I can do it on my own, thank you.
I remember when I was months away from getting married, living at home and folding laundry for my mom. When I got to the fitted sheets I did my usual: attempt to fold it twice, wrap it up in a ball, stuff it in the closet. Mom, of course, was not amused.
“You’re going to be a wife soon and you won’t know how to do this.”
I laughed and told her that Tim was not marrying me for my domestic skills so I wasn’t too worried about it (he married me for my money. I told him we’re in trouble because I married him for his money and neither one of us has come through).
To this day I don’t know how to fold a fitted sheet and if I see someone do it I will assume this:
Right. So I was talking about advice, right? I don’t know how to fold a fitted sheet because I blew off my mother’s teaching and now I’m a horrible housekeeper.
People all over the world (okay, at least my world) keep telling me to enjoy my boys while they are young. “It will pass so quickly” “They will be driving before you know it.”
I inwardly cringe whenever I hear that because I feel like I am barely surviving most days. Being a mother is HARD. Being a mother while battling depression is HARDER.
But my mom said something the other day that encouraged me (what do you know, I do listen to her!). She said, “You do enjoy them. I’ve watched you. I’ve seen you happy and I’ve seen you mad and frustrated with them and you are a good mother.”
So let me pass this on to you, if you are struggling as I am: YOU are a GOOD mom. You are. Don’t take on the guilt of feeling like you aren’t enjoying them. We don’t need that. If you love your kids, you enjoy them. If you read to them, you enjoy them. If you play with them, you enjoy them. If you bathe them, you enjoy them (clean). If you sit down to a crazy lunch where most of the food ends up on the floor, you laugh and enjoy them. You are doing it.
So the next time someone tells me to enjoy this time, I will invite them to come over for the night shift. So they can enjoy it too, of course.