By Rachel Martin
Meghan-This is exactly what I needed to hear today. I have been feeling down and have been hard on myself. Why do I feel like such a failure? I know that by staying in my emotionally abusive marriage that I am living in enemy territory. But that knowledge doesn’t make it any easier to handle his attacks, or put downs. I wish I wouldn’t get sucked in by his remarkable ability to turn a situation around to being my fault.
On Sunday Charlie came to me and said the dreaded words, “We need to talk.” My first thought was, “Oh, no. What did I do now?” Isn’t that sad. Then the next few moments I am going over what I could have done, that he could have misconstrued. He goes on to tell me that one of his friends came up to him and asked him if WE were ok.
This friend just happened to be a girl, one of my friends (why didn’t she come to me?) She said that I had posted that I felt “unimportant and abandoned”. He proceeds to tell me that he doesn’t appreciate me throwing him under the bus. “How have I abandoned you?”
I told him that I didn’t even remember what I wrote it about. (Written so long ago)He pressed me. I said that I knew that it hadn’t been directed at him. I said that I thought that it was probably my frustration about my Dad acting erratic toward my family. I was just feeling like I was alone and that I wanted desperately to fix the situation. This sounded about the right time period where I could have written it. I assured him that it wasn’t about him. “Well we already have trust issues (a story for another time) and I now I have to worry about what you say about me.”
Later I went to look. It had been a post that I made after being disappointed that I hadn’t heard back from the publisher that is considering my book. I didn’t want to share this with him. I was feeling abandoned by God (He gave me the book. I was just his pen. I know that I couldn’t have done it with out him). So now I wondered, why God? Why make me go through all that and not get it out there to help other people?
So, I assured him again. “Well ok, I guess,” he responded and he walked away.
Now I am mad. What ever happened to, “Sorry Honey that you feel that way. How can I help you? What about coming to me in the first place without condemning and ask me if he had done something wrong to hurt me and how he can help make it better?
Now I am exhausted and feel like I can’t face the day ahead of me and all its challenges. The work load seems overwhelming and the kids are pushing all my buttons. I think I would have been fine if I hadn’t had to have gone through the condemnation. Why do I allow myself to be effected the way I do? I am so weak now and just want to lay down in my bed. But the kids need me so I push on.
I fell across this post this morning. I read and cried. I will read and cry after I push publish. Do I matter? I know I do. I am just so tired. I am tired of breathing. I am tired of working so hard to not make a difference. I feel like a failure. I need to take these words to heart. I need to be strong. So I am reposting this for me. If you want to ride along with me then I won’t be alone. Hope it helps you too. As for me. I will shuffle through today somehow. Hopefully I will internalize joy by the end of the day. Meghan
Dear Mom Who Feels Like Quitting
By, Rachel Martin
I know it feels like the weight of the world is on your shoulders and that it really doesn’t matter if the dishes are done or that no one really cares that you stayed up till 2 am folding laundry or that you are just overlooked. I know you sit in the car and put your head on the steering wheel and the tears roll down at times. I know that sometimes you just want to throw in the towel and whisper (or scream) that you’ve had enough of all of this. I know. I know because I have felt that way.
I remember sitting in the bathroom behind the door with my head in my hands thinking that I couldn’t do this motherhood thing anymore and that I really didn’t matter or make a difference and that I would never ever catch up on laundry – which, by the way, I’ve never really caught up on. And because I’ve felt that way I’m writing today to tell you that you, right now, matter more than you might ever realize.
You, and your life, your voice, your giving of self, and all of that matters.
There will be days that are hard. Weeks that are hard. Months that are hard. But, you can do this. I know you can. You can pick yourself up, brush off the words that hold you back, and you can be mom today. You can look in your children’s eyes and tell them how much you love them – even though you are remembering how much they sassed back to you this morning – and you can love them unconditionally. You can make those pbjs for lunch today and sliced apples and can actually get the straw in the juice pouch on the first time. Or the second. You can drive those kids to soccer or ballet or to school or to where ever and you will tell yourself that you sitting in the car with them matters.
Quitting means stopping. And you don’t stop.
A wise friend of mine told me this weekend that we only fail when we quit.
Motherhood doesn’t look anything like I imagined when I was young. Motherhood doesn’t look like those pinterest boards full of birthday ideas with perfect fondant cakes and party favors that take three hours to make. Those moments are there. But seriously, listen to me, those things don’t make a mother. Those things, while they are beautiful, they don’t really matter in the life journey. Do you know what matters? You. Right now, reading these words, who is about to give of herself for her family.
Do you realize what an amazing impact you are leaving? Don’t tell me about all the times you’ve messed up. I’ve got them as well. But do you remember all the times where you have done well? Or the times when you’ve been there? Sitting up at one am rocking a toddler with a bad dream. Making dinner out of a pantry that is bare. Giving up on something you need so that your child can get what they need. Helping with math. Reading a story. Folding those clothes. Making lunches. Teaching. Listening to their stories. Being silly. Laughing. Holding the puke bucket. Wiping faces. Putting art on the wall. Watching them sleep.
Those are the moments in life that you are blessed to live.
So you may feel like you want to quit. Don’t. Pick up the motherhood towel right now and instead tell yourself you can do this today. You can. You can for your family. Don’t look at how Sally is mothering, or what the facebook status states, or the pinterest picture of the perfect mother. You are the perfect mother for your children today. Do not let the world qualify your motherhood. There is no price tag large enough that would ever illustrate the true value of motherhood. You are an amazing gift to your family.
I believe in you.
What are you waiting for? You can do this, sweet mother.
You totally can.
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Read Thank you Brave Mom.