Dear Moms… A Gentle Reminder
It has been a difficult month of little-to-no sleep in our household. My son’s anxiety is peaked, which means his sleep is broken and disturbed, and that ultimately means mine is too. It is difficult to remain centred, grounded, and patient when exhausted and suffering from sleep deprivation. I honestly cannot remember the last time I had 4 hours of uninterrupted sleep. It has been hard. On all of us.
The worst part of this is that I feel so helpless. I cannot seem to help my son sleep. I cannot seem to tame his anxieties. I sing to him. I talk with him. I hug and hold him. I read him stories. I remind him to take deep breaths. He is surrounded by stuffies that make him feel safe and comforted; and he has night lights to chase away the darkness. But he still cannot sleep a deep and restful sleep. He is fitful and often scared. By day, my son’s lack of sleep manifests into moodiness, grumpiness, and mini-tempers; and I feel as though I cannot cope. I feel my own short-temperedness rising within me, my annoyance, my frustration, and my tears that I am choking back. My emotions are frayed, my body is tired, and my mind is hazy. If I am feeling like this, then how is my little one feeling? Probably just the same.
And this thought makes me feel like I am failing. I am failing him. I am failing as a mom.
Carrying this guilt and shame, and frustration and helplessness around with me has prevented me from feeling grounded and happy. I confided my frustrations to another mom, and within that conversation, she confided in me that she too, is struggling with challenges presenting in her little one’s behaviour. As I stood there listening to her, I could see the pain and frustration in her eyes. I could see that she felt as though she was failing her child. It was like looking at my own reflection, and it stunned me.
It was in that moment that I had an epiphany. All mothers – at some point – feel like failures. I think we place very high expectations on ourselves and the relationships we ‘should’ have with our children. I think we are far too critical of our own abilities and don’t value ourselves as we should. We feel like we are failing. So, to all moms, including myself, here is my gentle reminder to you…
You as a mom, you are enough.
You will never fully comprehend the depth of your compassion, your empathy, and your love for your child. Just as your child has very big emotions, so too do you. Your emotions run deep, strong, and vast, and that is because you are invested in your child. You are invested in your child – everything you are, everything you do. Everything becomes second to your child, even yourself. Know this.
Every child has its own spiritual footprint. Each child is so unique and so very different; and because of this each child will process the world around them in their own individual way. It is difficult to know what thoughts or feelings are impacting your child, all you can witness is their actions or reactions. It is how we respond to them that counts. And even in the not-so-great moments when you yell or cry or speak harsh words to your child, you are still invested. You still fiercely love and protect your child. And they know this. So no matter how much you feel like you are failing, know – just know – you are not. Know your worth.
You are love, you are enough.
It is your embrace that you child seeks when they are scared, sad, hurt, or lonely. It is your presence – you – that gives them comfort. And, it is you that will take the brunt of their very big big BIG emotions and challenging behaviour because they feel the safest when they are with you. It does not make it easy, nor does it make it right, but it is the reality of being a mother. It is the reality of parenting.
You as a mom, you are enough because you are EVERYTHING to that little one’s world. You are the centre of your child’s universe as they navigate through these early stages of life.
It is you they trust. It is you they love. It is you they need.
It is you. You are enough.
Your fellow mom xx
Dear Daddies. Know that you are equally important to your child, but your strife, struggles, and emotions will register in their own unique way from that of a mother’s. xx
Dear Moms … A Gentle Reminder. Published by Crystal Joy Hall
Featured Image by Cherry Acosta