To all my overwhelmed mom friends who saw my pictures and figured I “had time” to take cute pictures at a park and make a cake for my birthday girl, I want you to know that really, I didn’t do it all or manage it all as well as it seemed.  

Maybe you were so overwhelmed and just thought you couldn’t measure up. Maybe you just quickly bought a birthday cake for your child or took some other shortcut. That’s okay.

The truth is that yesterday, and all this week pretty much, I have been hanging on by a thread. Just because you can’t do what it looked like I was “managing, ” it does not mean I have it figured out. 

We had two days of doctor appointments this week, plus yesterday it was passport appointments. That’s the only reason there were park portraits. My husband was making rounds for passport paperwork, and I had to wait somewhere, and my birthday girl was all cute and combed for the passport picture anyway. 

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The reality is that my baby cried and had a fever much of yesterday. Two days worth of dishes sat around my kitchen and the granola I baked two days ago is still sitting in my oven. (I write as I nurse the baby.) I baked the cake the day before and am thankful she wanted something simple (a 3-year-old request for a cake “all covered in strawberries and candies, with blue frosting”). It’s a tradition of ours that they choose the cake, and I have it as a high priority to make it. Even so, I might have cried a few tears while decorating it. I had so much work piled up around me. 

There is so much more I could say, but just know that yesterday afternoon I wrestled with the question of if I can believe from the bottom of my heart to tell others that Jesus is enough for the hard mom days. I concluded that when you are hanging on by a thread, may it be a thread of His hem, and just don’t let go. I hung on with a desperate prayer and some tears.

Shortly after, my husband came home and shared some answered prayers for hardships people very close to our hearts were going through. Then my parents came from two hours away, and my mom washed that pile of dishes for me, and they took us out for supper.

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This morning, the dishes still aren’t cleaned up, and my house is still dirty and messy. But we are done with appointments for a while, the baby is feeling a bit better, the laundry is started, and the sun shines a bit brighter. And I want you tired moms to know there will be easier days when it will be fun to be a mom again. 

Your priorities may be different from mine. Your kitchen (or car) may be cleaner than mine while you buy birthday cakes ready-made. Don’t be discouraged by a few nice pictures someone posts. Some people are much better at time management than others, but no one does it all. Just because it looks like I “do it all,” it doesn’t mean I really do.

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Melinda Dueck

Melinda is a happy wife, mom of four, homemaker, and owner of the blog, YouTube channel, and Facebook page for Connecting With Littles. She lives in Costa Rica and loves to write and speak to encourage and inspire other women.

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