Motherhood is the marathon I didn’t train for. It’s what we get up for, rain or shine, on broken sleep and an empty tank. It’s running alongside others and holding out an umbrella on those harder days. It’s jumping over obstacles and tripping and falling, it’s getting back up on wobbly legs.
No matter the hurdles, we keep on running.
It’s lifting weights side to side, back and forth until little eyes are closed. Carrying the load from yesterday and tomorrow, in our minds, in laundry baskets, in our hearts. It’s wrestling diaper changes, seats in and out of cars, little feet into shoes. It’s holding yourself up time and time again.
No matter how empty the barrel, we always find strength.
It’s the cross-country swim I wasn’t prepared for. It’s diving headfirst into cold water and needing to come up for air. It’s sinking with tired arms, exhaustion giving way to surrender. It’s the busy night time routines, piles of dishes, and canceled plans.
It’s keeping them afloat while finding your stride.
No matter the conditions, we keep on swimming.
It’s running a relay and wanting to pass the baton at 5 p.m. It’s admitting you need a break and catching your breath. It’s hearing the word “Mummyyyy”, all day through whining and tears and wondering how the same word that gives you so much reason is also the one that makes you want to tear your hair out. It’s letting the tears fall, from depletion, from relief, from an insurmountable love.
No matter how testing, we’re in this together.
It’s the coaching role I got promoted to with no experience. The game planner, the teacher. It’s encouraging little spirits and lifting them up. It’s nourishing little bodies, watching them take risks while we bite our lips. It’s taking their little hands in ours and helping them navigate this world so one day they can do it without us.
No matter how many times we may lose, we are always learning.
Motherhood is the marathon that begins with our prize and a never-ending finish line.
We became athletes from ready, set, go, and we will keep going, for them.
No matter what.
Originally published on Jess Urlichs, Writer