As she walks toward me I see her brave face, hat pulled down, hiding her tears. I see it and I smile. At the right moment I ask if everything is okay. Everything is not okay. Not today. I can already see that, but it’s important she knows I see her and that she knows she is not alone.
I’ve been that woman, that mum, SO many times. The one who would rock up 20 minutes late to a 30 minute gymbaroo class with a 3 month old in tow, to make sure I was doing something for the 2 year old. Busting my gut to get there because I thought I had to. And then just crying.
The one who would try so hard to be on time and to hold it all together. But no matter how hard I ‘tried,’ it never got easier. And eventually I would just cry.
Being a mum is hard work. We are constantly torn between loving these beautiful, amazing creatures that we are blessed to have placed in our care, and losing ourselves. Losing our ability to think straight. Losing our ability to sleep. Losing our ability to get anywhere on time, to arrive wearing clean clothes or even to know where we were supposed to be going in the first place. And feeling like we have lost the ability to take on the day when it’s all falling apart before its even 9am.
But then 9am comes and goes and somehow we are okay. We have cried, we have taken moments to ‘just breathe’ and we are still alive. And our babies are still alive and they are even smiling at us now. And somehow the darkness we are facing eventually lifts.
For some it’s a morning we have to push through; for some it’s more like a day. For others it’s many days, or weeks, or even months. But wherever you are on whatever day of your motherhood journey, good or bad, know you are not alone. Know that when you look around we see you, we really see you. We see how hard it can be, we KNOW how hard it can be and we are right there with you.
So given we all know how hard it can be to just get through the day, from this moment onwards, if you’re reading this post and you are just like us, know that if you look in our direction we will offer you a smile, just like we know you would too. We will ask you if you are okay, just like we know you would too. We will give you a hug and help out in any way that we can, because we know you would too.
Because as more women around us commit to speaking this sometimes silent, yet universal language of support, often given in the tiniest of ways, we know we will be able to get through anything. And even come out shining, in the very best of ways.
Big thank you to Hanna for sharing this image of her beautiful daughter x
Mum-focused author, educator and business owner, Jen Dugard is on a mission to ensure every woman is safely and effectively looked after when she becomes a mother. She is a highly qualified trainer and fitness professional educator and has been specialising in working with mums for over a decade. MumSafe is the go-to place online for women to find mum-focused fitness services that are all accredited, experienced and partnered with women’s health physios so you know you are in very safe hands.