In my experience, which is definitely marked by trauma via an emergency c-section and life threatening maternal illness at 29 weeks, motherhood hits you in the face like a cast iron skillet thrown by an Olympic shot putter. Maybe not at the very beginning, as did me, but I can tell you that it hits every mother at some point in the same jarring, stunning, ruinous way.
This motherhood thing is hard--really impossible.
I am reminded every single day that I am strong. I am reminded when the truly hard things happen (hello, cancer and long term side effects) and when the ridiculous things happen (lost items, sibling arguments, attitude). All of it requires me to tap into the strongest parts of my psyche--hidden tiny muscles I never used before but must or everything will fall apart.
Some days, it all makes me physically and mentally sore. Okay, if I am being honest, everyday. I end everyday sore. I am sore from worrying. I am sore from searching. I am sore from loving my imperfect, incredible children.
And frankly, I don't need a reminder that I am strong. If you could benchpress motherhood, I'd win whatever you win for lifting a car.
What, I actually need is a reminder and acknowledgement that at times I am the opposite.
Sometimes, I am weak and I just cannot look for one more thing or listen to one more story about classmates. Sometimes, I cannot face the hard things like making therapy and oncology appointments. Sometimes, I avoid dealing with an educational issue because I am tired and sore. Often, I don't do any laundry and I don't always play with my kids when they ask. Sometimes, I feed them Mcdonalds because I just cannot face cooking the organic chicken and vegetables.
Sometimes, I am weak and broken and tired, like a mother.
And sometimes, well, often times, I need someone to look at me and say, you know what, I see you as just a woman, not a super hero and that is actually just spectacular.
If you are a mother reading this, I want you to know that I know you are strong--you have no choice--but you are also just awesome when you are tired and soft and overwhelmed. You are a woman and that is just spectacular.