I know that you see me posting pictures of my home cooked meals, perfectly packed kids lunches for my kids, (pre-quarantine) and snippets of a clean and put together home. Let me tell you; that is not how my real life looks like everyday. Some of you have asked me how I do it all and make it look easy. The answer to that question is – I don’t do it all, I’m not always put together and I don’t know it all. The truth is, some nights I’m too tired to even lift a finger after a long day of work, trying to be present with kids, catching up with some chores – I end up ordering pizza for dinner and I even let my kids have fizzy drinks with dinner because I’m too tired to argue with them over why they shouldn’t have fizzy drinks at dinner, I just let them be out of sheer exhaustion. Some days I have piles of laundry that needs to be folded and put away and it takes me days, sometimes weeks before I get to put it away. The truth is my life can be very unorganized, albeit a beautiful mess, if you may.
Why am I sharing this with you? You see, I see so much of my younger self in you, a young wife and or mother who looked around at other wives and mothers around her and felt inadequate. I was that young wife and mom that put a tremendous amount of pressure on myself to be like the other moms I saw and observed thinking they had it all together. I cannot tell you how many times I would go home after several play dates with my kids when they were younger feeling like I had to change so many things about myself, my home, and how I parented. I would feel sorry for myself thinking I was a lousy mom who would never measure up to the other moms I encountered. How and why were they so organized and put together and I wasn’t, I’d ask myself? I would listen to their stories of how they made their own baby food, how they read every single night to their kids, how they had this routine and that routine and I’d be like man! Where do they get the time, let alone the energy to do all that AND with such grace and consistency?
What I didn’t realize then, was that these women that I looked at with so much wife and mom envy had their own struggles and battles they were dealing with about the very same insecurities I had and more. In spending more time with these women and in getting to know each other, by being vulnerable with each other; we would reluctantly begin to share our struggles in dribs and drabs about our fears and insecurities as fellow wives and moms.
It occurred to me then that no one has it all together. It was a great relief to know that I was in good company after all, that the very things I worried about, these women worried about too – we were all just trying to be half decent moms. If anyone had told me prior to this time that these women I looked up to had struggles like mine, I would have never believed it based on my casual and initial shallow encounters with them. It wasn’t until we all let our guards down when we learnt that we were all just young wives and mothers who were trying our best to raise our kids well, and to the best of our knowledge of what we thought motherhood was supposed to be like. Coming to that understanding took a lot of pressure off me.
If you learn one thing from this post let it be this: find wife/mom friends that can be real and vulnerable with you and vice versa. You need honest and open women in your life, women who will build you up by being real and truthful about their own struggles. Only then will you truly grow in your wife and or parenting journey. With my new found perspective, I opened myself up to learning from other women some things that I thought would work for myself, my kids and my household. I took what I thought would work for my family and I tailored it to suit mine and my family’s needs. Some things worked, others didn’t. I ultimately found; through a lot of trial and error and tweaking of ideas what worked best for me. I let go of the notion that I had to be and do things in the same way as Amy/Sylvia/Tari.
I steadily figured out routines, traditions, meals and many other things on my own, drawing inspiration from the women around me but without feeling the pressure to be like them. Please don’t ever feel pressured to be or to do things like me or anyone else. Be inspired by all means but understand that you have your own journey to tow, what works for me might not work for you and your household.
Pay attention to the needs of your family and find solutions and ways based on them and not on anything or anyone else. Keep in mind too, that pictures only tell a very small part of people’s life stories and they’re just that, pictures, not every day reality. I don’t have it all together and honestly, I don’t think anyone does. We are all just winging it and trying to give this wife/mom life our best shot and sometimes we nail it while other times we totally miss the target and that’s totally okay too. It’s all part of the journey of being a wife, a mother, a parent. Relax, embrace, take in, and be present along the ride with your family – make the most of what you have and aspire to live YOUR best mom/wife life.
Wow this spoke to me as I feel like I’m not “mum enough” but slowly but surely surrounded by women like you I will get to understand that there is only so much I can do,thank you for the honesty
Yes sis, you are doing just fine. We all don’t have it figured out, all we can do is work with what we have as we continue to figure out what works best for us and our different situations.
Oh wow – what a profound message this here is…thank you once again for sharing and for your wisdom. So much to take away here (and I am an older sister!)
Thank you Love, as we say in Shona “kudzidza hakuperi” (learning is an ongoing process), we all can learn something at whatever stage of our lives and from people of all ages. Thank you for you support always. x
Wow. I had to read it 3 times and let everything soak in slowly.This is an amazing post and it really ministered to me.Words of wisdom indeed. Keep us the good work sister, encouraging us all. Thank you.
Bless your heart Sis. Thank you very much for taking the time to read this post. I’m glad it ministered to you, looking forward to you sharing your nuggets of parenting wisdom with us as well in the near future. 🙂
I’m a mom of 2 with an infant and a 4 year old. This letter is so encouraging and beautifully written. I’ve been stuck indoors trying to balance it all and so much of it falls through the cracks. Thank you for this reminder!
Hugs dear, you’re doing your best given the situation. Enjoy playful moments with the kids and do what you can, the most important people are those babies and your mental well being right now. One step at a time momma, you will find your rhythm along the way. x
I love your willingness to be vulnerable, and to share things from a refreshingly real space. Even for someone like me who doesn’t have a family or is a wife. We can still draw inspiration.
Thank you so much Trudy for the reminder that we are enough as we we work towards bettering ourselves with no pressure of comparing ourselves to others.
I am a mother of 3, 1 boy (11) and 2 girls (6 & 4), my son being the oldest and falls under the autism spectrum. Its really not easy most of the time to balance it all and run my business.. But i am grateful to God for the grace and mercy i receive each day..
Thank you sis and keep inspiring us..
Hugs and prayers for you love. I can’t imagine it being easy juggling everything AND having a son that has autism. May God continue to give you strength as you find your way in and around your home and with your family. You are enough, and you are doing your best, keep at it and thank you for taking the time to read this post. Have a great weekend. x
Thank you Sis for inspiring us. Having an older sister with the same roots means a lot esp in the diaspora. Ndimi matova ruwadzano rwedu and I’m definately learning a lot from you.
Thank you for being here!
This read was quite a breath of fresh air. Thank you for your honesty. Many a times people like to call out other people on social media for having “fake lives” because you chose to glorify the little stolen moments of pure bliss and brief moments of sanity in our already busy lives. As if it would be normal to post my dirty kitchen or take pics of myself when I am frustrated to my eyeballs with my kids not following a single instruction that I would have given them a hundred times already. But I digress. Thanks for this post. It made me breathe a little and tell myself to take it easy. I am not a fraud, I am just a wife/mom guilt-ridden and trying to keep it together and catch a break at the same time chile. God bless you❤️.
Thank you for reading and for the perspective – “glorifying stolen moments of bliss,” that is exactly what we do on social media when we capture that moment of “perfection” in that one still moment. I love that! You’re definitely not a fraud, we’re all trying to figure everything out as we go. I truly appreciate you taking time out to read this. God Bless you too. 🙂
Thank u sis. This spoke volumes. We r winging it to be fair and got to find what works for us and our families without the pressure. I was the mum that turned up to school with my son on teacher training day (not sure what u call it in America) and wondered how all the mums had known in advance lol, I never got the memo! We live to fight another day. God continue to bless u x
Wow thank you for this eye opening story..it really helped me from now on i have a new way of looking at this..pressure on me to be like someone zero lol..its only when such stories are told that we see and know how to do things..thank you sis Trudy
Thank you for this encouraging reminder. Much needed especially in these trying times we are in. We are all trying our best and its okay to not have it all figured❤️
This here said it all for me; “pictures only tell a very small part of people’s life stories and they’re just that, pictures, not every day reality.” Thank you for being so open and honest MaNcu. I was truly blessed.
Thank you, this was me last year, l couldnt keep up, l would cry myself to sleep, but im stronger now, very reassuring message, much needed reminder
Wow! Beautifully true ❣️!! Thank you so much!!
Oh my, this is deep my sister ❤
Thank you so much.
I love this post and l am taking notes because I know a time will come when l shall need this. Now things seem to be alright because there are no kids and there isn’t that much pressure but I shall need these words echoing at the back part of my head soon. So when l feel overwhelmed I shall refer myself back to this post. Thanku in advance.👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾
Wow profound words from a wide queen! Thank you for sharing part of your life with us thugs post really spoke to me, young wife with no kids yet but I do find myself wondering if I will be able to handle all that. Be blessed
I love coming here,I always leave feeling good about myself.Thank you for this platform.
I’m just winging it and will keep trying.
You are doing a great job… I really wish I could get my things in order, feeling like a failure on most days but I’ve been encouraged by this read. Thank you 😊