Are you ok?
I have had a tricky week this week. If you caught my book reading on Tuesday, you will have seen that I cried so much that I had to cut my ‘motivational chat’ short. It was a very weird experience for me. I am an emotional soul but those tears took me by surprise.
Then I listened as many mums shared their feelings of overwhelm and resentment at the new tier restrictions. One of my beset running buddies explained that she felt really low and was having all kinds of imposter syndrome issues at work. The girls have been very up and down and poor old Keri is still struggling with his ruptured disc. Life is a funny old thing and it really isn’t easy is it?
I don’t think it is supposed to be easy. That’s probably not the message you’d like but it’s true. I’m all into the ‘What Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Stronger’ vibe but I do wish the challenges would give you time to come up for air between each one!
What we all need is a crash course in how to make ourselves feel special. It’s not that our families mean to take us for granted but we are good at getting on with things with very little fuss and are often overlooked. I know I’ve shared with you before that I plod on for weeks and then explode into a huge rant about how I am not running a hotel and when was the last time anyone else saw this magic washing and ironing fairy who transfers things from washing basket (or bedroom floor!) back into drawers. I have never seen her!
Start with asking for love and thanks. A little bit of gratitude goes a long way. Keri is very good at reminding the girls that I’ve worked all day and still made tea, been shopping, sorting their admin and made sure that everything they need for school is ready for them. Being acknowledged and recognised makes you feel so much better about yourself and it definitely makes me feel less resentful.
It means that I feel noticed. I don’t want thanks all the time but I do want it sometimes. I deserve it because I spend many hours each week rushing about like a blue arsed fly making sure that everyone else has what they need. It’s often my stuff I forget.
It is ok for you to ask for recognition too. Recognition is appreciation. I want to be appreciated. I want you to be appreciated too. Appreciation is a basic need that stops you going completely off the deep end when your family continue to walk past the pile of their stuff on the stairs that has been there all week!
I’m going to call you out a little bit as well. It is not selfish or self-centred to want to be noticed so please have a kind word with yourself if it makes you feel uncomfortable that this is what you need. To want and need appreciation is a primal human longing. It’s what makes you the amazing human you are. Ask to be seen and heard.
On a bigger level, we live in a society where mothers are not appreciated enough. We are still taught that we’re not supposed to want or need anything for ourselves and that we should sacrifice our ‘me’ for the family ‘us’. That is bonkers. When our need to be thanked and noticed is met, doing the day to day ‘stuff’ doesn’t seem so hard and we feel better about ourselves. The odd ‘thank you’ from Grace or Neave makes me know that doing what I do is done from a place of love – not of duty and that’s a much better way to feel.
Also appreciate yourself. Take some time today to pause and consciously recognise how much you do. Remind yourself that you are a great mum and that being you is enough. Truly recognise how much your family needs you and the difference you make. Mothers change the world. We nurture the future. You are making a positive difference every day. That deserves to be recognised.