Parenting is tough all year long, but sometimes, especially during the holidays, it can feel like an insurmountable task. Doubt, anxiety, worry, financial stresses, and so many more things weigh heavy during this time of the year. I’m proud to be participating in a sponsored campaign to remind all parents – me included – that we’re doing a great job. The stories I get to share with you are mine, and meant to encourage you in this journey. #doingood #minutemaid
I have a friend.
She amazes me.
Dianna is a mom of a gorgeous adult daughter, five of the most adorably sweet children I have ever met, is a classically-eclectic homeschool mama with a crazy smart preschooler and into-everything toddler. She’s a creative blogger with a strong faith and desire to inspire other families in their own Catholic faith.
And she works all weekend as a nurse.
Yes. She. Does.
She cares for her busy family, ministers to others through her site, creates amazingly beautiful Catholic kids’ printables, and homeschools her kids all week. Then leaves her sweet kids, along with her handsome and wicked-smart husband, and cares for others at the hospital all weekend long.
Why am I telling you all of this?
Because Dianna, like you and me, often worries that she’s failing at this whole motherhood thing. When the holidays approach, and we’re steeped in the heart of the Advent season – that time of preparation – we worry that what we’re doing won’t be enough for the kids we care so much about. That they won’t live out our family values and morals and faith. That they won’t understand how very much we love them.
I often find myself leaving Dianna a long, weepy message about my many failings. She reminds me that I’m doing a good job. And a few days later is leaving me a similar weepy message.
Because all moms doubt.
It doesn’t matter how much we seem to have it all together to the outside world, I’m willing to bet that each of you reading this post feels like you’re failing this whole motherhood thing – at least a lot of the time.
Minute Maid released a video – that I made the mistake of watching while sipping a Coke in Chick-fil-A one evening, and sat in the corner booth a complete sniffling mess – and I think it’s perfect:
We don’t know what our kids think about the job that we’re doing. Do we? But I’d imagine that, like the kids in that video, we’re amazing to them. Unlike the kids in that video, they’re probably not going to come out and tell us what they think about the job we’re doing.
So I think we should tell each other…
Dianna, my darling friend, you’re an absolutely breath-taking mama. I’m so sad that we live a day’s drive away from one another or I’d tell you that in person all the time. You are rocking motherhood. You’re one of the most natural and intuitive mamas I’ve ever met, and I’m proud you’re my friend.
You’ve raised a beautiful young woman, and the passel of rosy-cheeked little ones you have wreaking havoc in your little home are a blessing to this world. They will be amazing adults – because you are.
You’re doing good. Really, really good. I love you.
Better yet, let’s see what your already grown daughter thinks.
I asked Dianna’s adorable grown Abigail what she thinks of her mama, and this is what she wrote:
There are an endless number of unsung heroes in the world. Nurses to mothers to simple people who exist just to be there for you. My mother is all of those; an unsung hero, a nurse, a mother, and a best friend. She is my light in my darkness (college), she’s the woman who raises 5 children under 9, and she is the woman who saves lives and cares for people. She is my hero. – Abigail Mattingly, 2015
I’m so thankful I could ask Abby what she thinks, but so many moms will never know what their kiddos think of them. Join me in telling others how great they are.
I’m making it a mission… like I wrote when I told about my playground story, I want to find moms who are doing the day to day of parenting, and let them know it matters. Because it does. Being a mom, in the moment – whether it’s grocery shopping, homeschooling, taking a walk, changing the 52nd dirty diaper, or cleaning up, again – it matters more than anything else ever will.
Will you join me, and spread the message? Tell a mom – or dad – that they’re rocking parenthood. Tell them that they are amazing – in whatever moment they find themselves…
Tell your friend or neighbor or cousin or aunt that she is a beautiful mother. Help her believe it. Moms are doing important work, and we all need encouragement in the journey.