I see you. And you are magnificent. You’re standing there trying to herd your children away from certain death – no make up, lop-sided messy bun like maybe you had slept on it?, yoga pants, t-shirt with a stain just poking out from the long cardigan you are wearing because it’s chilly today, no earrings or rings or necklaces – all while just trying to get a few groceries so your family doesn’t starve to death.
Some people would call you a hot mess, but I see the vibrant, thankless work you are doing in raising human beings and it is stunning beauty. You see, I know you are in the thick of the battle, dancing on the edge with fate, working on little sleep, and still working it even when it’s boring and exhausting and sometimes, downright scary. Remember the croup?
You push through all this past yourself because you are a visionary and something deep within you catches a glimpse of those tiny curls someday towering over you with great confidence and ability. Doing things that you taught them. Changing the world and bringing hope. Yeah, yeah, but, in the meantime, you have to focus on singing the birthday song while they wash their hands, so you don’t have to take one more sick day and can save enough money for their college education.
But here’s the thing. Please don’t disappear. We need you too. I know the world you dance in now is fascinating and overwhelming and amazing and a priority. But I want you to remember that you are someone’s child, too. And they had hopes and dreams for you, too. Please take the time to dream again. And, hey, we’d like to talk to you a little about it.
It’s really, really okay to take a break no matter how much the critics will toss around your parenting credentials. Remember, they are not the ones in the fight on the ground doing the work. Nod and smile. Nod and smile. Learn to say yes to your children (and spouse) as much as you can and no to everyone else as much as you can.
I love that you can let your hair down by putting it up and out of the way so that you can get umm, stuff done. It’s your getting down to business hair. Back to basics without all the trappings of womanhood that the advertisers say we need. We can play with that later, but now – now it’s getting real.
And so, as I see your bun walking off into the distance with both hands clutching two little ones – melting back into the world again, I say a prayer for you. That you know you are enough. And that you get enough sleep tonight.