An experienced mum’s open letter to other (exhausted) women has sparked an outpouring of relief – and was the message many didn’t know they needed.
Dear sweet exhausted Mama,I NEED you to hear me. I NEED you to understand something.Whatever you are doing for that…
“You are perfect”
Mum-of-three, Leslie Means who blogs at Her View From Home sent out the bolstering message via Facebook last week, and it’s been steadily going viral ever since. In an Instagram-fueled world gone kind of mad, Leslie’s words are a reminder to stay in your own lane and back yourself, because mums are always trying their best.
Her post started out as a bit of a breastfeeding confessional on the unconventional and differing milk supply each of her breasts has. But it soon swung into a heartfelt missive about how imperfection really is the perfect path for many of us, especially when it comes to parenting.
“You love your baby, right? You’re doing everything in your power to give him/her the best possible life, aren’t you? Great. Then you’re perfect. Do you hear me? Do you REALLY hear me? Mama – YOU ARE PERFECT,” Leslie wrote, going on to elaborate on what perfect might look like for different mums.
The best kind of perfection is steeped in difference and diversity, Leslie explained. In her world, you’re perfect “even if you”…
Homeschool your babies
Send your kids to public school
Let your kid get a phone at age 7
Make your kid wait until he/she is 13 for a phone, or make-up, or earrings, or to play sports
Let your kid eat Cheetos every day
Buy your kid organic food
Hire a house cleaner
Clean your toilets with a toothbrush
Make your kids clean your toilets
Drink too much wine
Drink too much coffee
Only drink water
Let your kid wear Bon Jovi t-shirts at age 6
Let your kid wear mismatched socks to school
Forget your kid at school”
View this post on Instagram
I found cat hair in my baby's toes today. And not just a little bit. A lot. Like, I could have knit a small sock for my son's sweet foot with the amount of hair that I discovered tangled in between those piggies. Because our floors haven't been swept in days (weeks?). Add that to the to-do list. Along with cleaning toilets and buying groceries and laundry. Holy buckets of tacos- we have so much laundry. My fantastic hair dresser is on maternity leave and since I'm too stubborn (and too tired) to find an alternative until she gets back, my hair is quickly sprouting gray. There's not enough mascara to cover it up, so I pull most of it out. My right boob is so much bigger than lefty, I'm pretty sure I am leaning a bit. And leaking. Still leaking. I smell like an outhouse. No, really. All day I've been wondering if maybe there is baby poo on my shirt (likely) or maybe cat poo? Dear sweet baby Jesus – let's hope it's not mine. I think it's obvious I haven't showered in a while. Also, zits. Why does my face look like puberty just found me? And baby spit up? I don't even worry about bibs or towels anymore. Just use whatever piece of clothing I have on to soak that stuff in. (Probably why I smell like an outhouse.) Last week when I bragged about the baby sleeping through the night? Yeah. That was short lived. Like a one night wonder. Two nights ago I went into his room at 3am, nursed him, put him back into his crib and just laid down on the floor beside the crib. I think I used a dirty onesie for a pillow? Not sure why I didn't go back to bed. Probably couldn't take the 20 step walk back to our room. And I'm tired. So tired. Month 4 with our new baby has us all exhausted. I love this little guy (and his big sisters) so much it hurts. Duh. All mothers do. But gosh dang – some days (weeks/months) are hard. If you also smell like an outhouse – well, Mama I'm here to tell you you're not alone. I'm right there with ya. Cheers to a wild and crazy Saturday night full of baby giggles, little girl hugs and wine (WINE) once those babies who fill my heart with so much love – finally sleep. XO, Leslie #babykeithan #4monthsold #ineedashower
“Preach it! Teach it! Believe it!”
Leslie urged mums to trust themselves and do what feels right for them – and their kiddos.
“Don’t listen to what everyone else has to say. Listen to your instincts. God gave them to mothers for a reason. Trust in that. Believe in that. And know that you are raising your babies perfectly.”
Other mums were cheering from the sidelines and feeling much, much less alone after reading her heartfelt words.
“God I wish I could hug you! Sometimes it feels like your alone in this until you read a post from a fellow mama. I needed this today!” one follower wrote.
“Our gut instinct is always the best way to go. You need to be at peace with your thoughts and love those babies. I have few regrets raising my two. Giving them love and attention is the best,” another mum posted.
“And the mamma tribe said Amen sister! Preach it teach it believe it! There is no right or wrong!” one woman wordily fist-bumped.
You’re doing everything in your power to give him/her the best possible life, aren’t you? Great. Then you’re perfect!