Dear exhausted, overwhelmed, and underappreciated mamas:
I want to start this letter by acknowledging something you may feel deep down in your heart but rarely hear: your relentless efforts, often hidden from plain sight, deserve not just recognition but celebration.
I see you.
I see the tiredness in your eyes, the weight of responsibility on your shoulders, and the countless tasks you juggle daily. You may feel like you’re wearing an invisibility cloak, making your labors of love seem unnoticed and unappreciated.
Motherhood is a rollercoaster journey filled with love, joy, and growth, but it’s also riddled with exhaustion and feelings of being overlooked. Society often fails to acknowledge the invisible labor that mothers perform daily. Your efforts often go unnoticed, taken for granted, or deemed as just part of your “job.”
Let’s break down this invisibility cloak of motherhood and reveal the amazing strength that lies beneath.
Invisible Labor—Emotional, Mental, and Physical
Motherhood is a full-time job, but it’s not just about feeding, clothing, and caring for your children. It’s about managing the household, planning meals, remembering school events, and tending to everyone’s emotional needs. It also means keeping track of the tiny details, remembering what your kiddos forget, creating small moments of joy and connection, and this invisible labor is what keeps your family’s world running smoothly. It’s high time society recognizes it for the essential work it truly is.
The Emotional Backbone
Mothers are the emotional backbone of the family. Your ability to sense when something is wrong, to provide comfort and reassurance, and to be a source of unwavering support is a pillar of strength that often goes unnoticed. Your emotional labor holds your family together, and it should be celebrated just as much as any other accomplishment.
The Mental Load
The mental load of motherhood is a heavy burden. You’re the one who remembers birthdays, schedules, and grocery lists. You’re the keeper of important family information. It’s a role that may feel invisible, but without it, chaos would reign. Your ability to manage this mental load is a vital skill that deserves appreciation.
Adaptability and Resilience
Every day as a mother brings new challenges, from sleepless nights to unexpected emergencies. Your adaptability and resilience shine through as you tackle these challenges head-on. You may not receive a gold medal for your ability to adapt, but your perseverance is something to be celebrated.
Patience Beyond Measure
Patience, another aspect of motherhood, often goes unnoticed. Whether you’re teaching your child to tie their shoes for the hundredth time or dealing with a teenager whose favorite word is “no,” your unwavering patience is a true gift. It’s a quality that shapes your children’s characters and deserves acknowledgment.
Perhaps the most powerful force in the world is a mother’s unconditional love. Your ability to love your children, no matter what, is a gift that will shape their lives forever.
Breaking Free from Invisibility
How can we break free from this invisibility cloak that hides your efforts from the world? Here are a few steps:
- Open Dialogue: Communicate with your partner, family, and other loved ones about your feelings, needs, and ways in which you’re seeking their support. Let them know how meaningful it is to be seen in the work you do, and that their appreciation of your efforts goes a long way in sustaining you.
- Share the Load: Have you had the thought, “If I don’t do it, it won’t get done”—or maybe even, “If I don’t do it, it won’t get done the right way,”? The time to let people in to help you is here, mama. Don’t be afraid to delegate tasks and responsibilities. Everyone in the family can play a part in managing the household and taking care of each other. Not only does this help you, but it also helps your kiddos learn what it means to be a supportive and self-sufficient member of a household.
- Small Victories: Celebrate the daily wins, no matter how small. Every accomplishment counts, and you deserve to acknowledge them. From successfully getting your picky eater to finish their veggies to managing to squeeze in a few minutes of “me time” during a hectic day, each small triumph is a testament to your dedication and resilience in the beautiful chaos of motherhood.
- Join a Support System: Connect with other mothers who understand your struggles. Sharing experiences and advice can provide a sense of validation and support. Surrounding yourself with a community of mothers who have walked in your shoes can be a lifeline. It’s a place where you can laugh, vent, and find solace in knowing that you’re not alone in the challenges you face as a mother. Together, you can navigate the ups and downs of this incredible journey called motherhood.
Mama, your efforts are the backbone of your family’s well-being. They deserve recognition, appreciation, and celebration. You don’t need to be a superhero to make a difference; you are already a hero in your family’s eyes. Your tireless work, your love, your sacrifices—these are the qualities that make motherhood a profound and beautiful journey.
So here’s to you, mama, for your strength, love, and resilience. Your invisible efforts are not invisible to us. They are cherished, admired, and celebrated.
With heartfelt appreciation,
A fellow mother