The Lies We Tell

The Lies We Tell

When I was ginormously pregnant with Ellen, everyone was always telling me how wonderful pregnancy was and how I just “glowed.” I know they were all trying to be encouraging, but it didn’t feel wonderful and if anything I was smoldering, not glowing. One Sunday, one of the sweet little old ladies at church engaged me in a conversation that I found quite refreshing. “It’s hard, isn’t it?” She said. “When I hear all those women talk about how wonderful it is, I think they’re either lying, or they must be cuckoo-crazy!” Amen sister, amen.

During my journey in motherhood over the past few years, I’ve noticed something about moms. We stretch the truth a lot. We over exaggerate our kids capabilities, gloss over our own inadequacies, and outright lie about how we love all the hard parts. One time, I was reading an acquaintance’s blog where she said she “didn’t mind” waking up in the middle of the night with her little one because she just “cherished those quiet moments they spent together” and would be “sad when they ended.” Now, I for one have never leapt from my bed in the middle of the night thinking, “Wahoo! Special snuggle time!” I’ve grumbled, I’ve rolled over hoping the crying would stop, and I’ve even yelled passionately when I’ve walked into doors in blurry stupors. I’ve always minded and rarely cherished. In my humble opinion, either this woman was lying or she is cuckoo-crazy. Either way, there’s something unhealthy about it. Yes, there is something to be said about having a positive attitude or “faking it till you make it,” but what about the other moms listening who now feel guilty because they don’t love losing sleep? I’m not saying we should all constantly vent our frustrations about motherhood, but I think we should be more realistic.

There are many parts of motherhood that are wonderful, but there are also those moments when you wonder: What was I thinking having children? or How can I do this? That doesn’t make you a bad mom, that makes you human. And maybe once we admit that we aren’t perfect we can spend less time fretting and more time enjoying the sweet moments that being a parent has to offer.

7 thoughts on “The Lies We Tell

  1. Well said and I totally agree. I have never been one to say I love all things about motherhood, but rather expressed how difficult it can be and how much I don’t cherish those moments that some claim to love. That being said it’s not as though I don’t love some aspects of motherhood and what it has taught me about myself. I appreciate your realistic outlook and opinion Audrey.

  2. Some of our acquaintances have said they don’t want to have children because they like being able to “pick up and go on a trip to Mexico” whenever they want to. These kinds of people have dogs instead. In a way, I feel bad for their outlook, because I can’t imagine missing out on the joys of having children. Then there are moments (sometimes several during a day) when I think that maybe those people aren’t missing out on so much after all and I am tempted to ask myself why I had children! Being a parent sure stretches your capabilities. But, at the end of the day (when the kids are hopefully sleeping, ha ha) I do love being a mom. I will stop typing so I can now settle a brawl among my boys… 😉

  3. Amen! I’ve been thinking “no more kids” for the last 9 months.

    I love the baby stage, but it’s the never-ending whinyness, power struggles, tantrums, orneryness and stubbornness of the two-year-old stage that has been killing me. Maybe we’ll think about having another one when Sam’s in kindergarten, or maybe when Andrew is 😉

  4. Amen, I think people feel guilty if caught talking bad about hard times as a mom or that you aren’t tough enough. You sad it just right, and the truth must be told. Hats off to Motherhood and all the hard time a long with the laughter, hugs, smiles and fun times.

  5. Yes! This, now this is true. We sleep trained our girls, and while it was hard, it was harder for me to get up several times in the night to shoot the breeze with my girls. I must admit, once they began sleeping through the night, I thought “oh I’ll miss that quiet time with them.” But realistically not enough to keep getting up with them for no REAL reason.

    But yep… Being a parent is hard. And sometimes I’ve wondered what the crap I was thinking having kids when not having kids was so much easier. They’re totally worth it… But it’s never easy peasy.

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