to the invisible feeling mom


I remember once, a week after giving birth,  going to Target (of course – it’s like the sanctuary for us moms) and walking to the back of the store feeling exhausted and not knowing how to get to the front again. I kind of wanted to wear a sign that said just given birth have mercy. But no one knew that inner part of my story. The no sleep worn out part. The part where my eyes welled up with tears because I bumped into someone in that tired state and they got irritated. I just wanted them to know the deep parts of me, the parts that were struggling, and so on – I wanted them to understand that sometimes the outside doesn’t mirror the inside.

I felt invisible.

I know you understand me right now.

I know you understand what it’s like to exist in a world where the burdens and lists and tireds and to-do’s and expectations are always on us but we move about and everyone just sees the outside and that inside part is just there needing a friend. It’s kind of easy to feel invisible in a world of perpetual busy.

I know you understand what it’s like to give and love and give and love and to have tears in your eyes when those that you love tell you that you’re the worst. (I get that sometimes when I take away media rights from non listening sixth graders.) I know you understand the nights of no sleep and the homework and the relationship issues and the whole mom load that we walk through.

Not feeling understood can make us feel alone.


What if I reminded you that every mom that you meet – everyone of us – has those moments where we just want to say have grace please and love me right where I am.

Right where I am.


Sometimes I think we think we need to have every duck in a row before we invite people into our homes and our space and do things. I discovered that after many years of doing this that I never ever seemed to get anything in a row and instead became more and more lonely. So instead of trying to have it all together I’ve just kind of decided to say here I am. A mess sometimes. Great other times. If you want me to volunteer and cut some paper at home for school I can do that but I can’t be there at 7:15. We have marker on our wall at my house. We eat chicken nuggets too. I love to watch Modern Family. I love Target. I love Starbucks even more. Amazon Prime is awesome. And I’m a good friend. Sometimes. Just love me for me, okay?

You for you.

So you know, sweet mom walking this journey with all of us – and I mean all of us because there are millions of us – let me just tell that we, not just I, understand.

We understand. 

We understand how three year olds can make us want to pull our hair out. We understand why the words Levi threw up in school today make the hairs on the back of our neck stand up and require instant sanitizing of the hands. We understand money issues and fear and relationship issues. We understand what it’s like to lose happy and to not even know where to find it again. We understand loving those kids that drive us crazy. We understand that sometimes sticker charts work for two days and that time-outs might not work and that sometimes we have to take the long way home.

We understand.

Please do not feel alone in this motherhood journey.

Please do not worry that you have moments where you struggle.

Please do not think you are not a good mom because you have days where you want to throw in the towel.

Please do not feel invisible.


We understand.

And my friend, here’s the truth. Time will keep moving forward.

The things that we struggle with today will get finished — after all none of my kids in school still need potty training. It’s just that when we’re in the thick of it it feels as if we’ll never get out. The invisible moments will fade and there will be moments where you will shine. You’ll fall too, but that’s okay. You’ll get through. One day, one moment, one breath, one second, one week, one month, one year at a time.

And in that time you will mother. You will discover you. You will discover what works. You will have ups and downs. You will thrive. You will love.

And you are not alone. You are not invisible.

You are valuable.

And we, yes we, are walking right beside you.


3 Responses to “to the invisible feeling mom”

  1. January 7, 2016

    Liz Reply

    Wow, just wow! I feel like you are me and I just needed to hear this so badly. I have a 4 yr old named Levi ha and prayed for him for years. I finally getting pregnant naturally after 7 years of anguish and doctors telling me I’d never be able to have a child on my own. So basically he’s my dream come true and all we are doing lately is butting heads & having power struggles about everything. I guess I don’t know how to unspoil him and it’s really hard to do! I feel like I’ve kind of lost myself as a stay at home mom & want to feel motivated and be in the present moment more with him. So thank you for your post I just happened to come across late night and I felt like it was meant to be, this made me feel a lot better. 💖

  2. January 7, 2016

    Ellen Reply

    I tend to forget that there are lives outside of my crazy existence. It is easy enough, because I live on an island, in the least populated area of said island. My closest neighbors are also my in-laws. And I am grateful for them. But I also feel alone a lot of the time. And I will admit here that I am a bit more antisocial than I would like to be. And meeting new people fills me with anxiety. But I don’t feel the support I need as a woman, a mother, a human being.
    I keep cleaning my house in a mad attempt of sanity, like if it is finally clean it will prove I am worthy of out side attention. That it will give me the boost to finally say hello to the woman that shops at the local market, or call to set up a play date for my girls. But it is never clean enough.
    I get up and I start the list. The list of all the things that must get done for the day to run smoothly, for everyone else. And while I pay the bills and ferry kids to appointments, do the shopping, prepare the meals,and clean the house. And it is here I truly believe my family think all this happens by elves or something and since it is done by magical creatures it doesn’t really matter. So they can drop there shoes in the middle of the floor, scavenge the kitchen for food, leave the lights on, toys out and watch ever more t.v… I feel like I have just faded away only to be recognized if something is needed. And I know that there is a point where all moms feel like they lost their identity and eventually it comes back but by the time it does it is like two strangers meeting and well that makes me anxious. So while I am in these deep trenches feeling alone and forgotten reading this post was like a friendly hug saying don’t worry we got you. So thank you. Today I will be a little less alone. -E

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