Struggling is waking up every morning to your alarm clock—the sound of a crying baby hours before you expect it.
Struggling is thinking about all the things you need to accomplish that day and feeling your chest tighten a little.
Struggling is trying to keep it together, so they don’t fall apart.
Struggling is making it down the stairs before the kids roll out of bed just to realize you forgot to make that last-minute trip to the grocery for milk last night.
Struggling is crying in the bathroom while the shower runs, clutching a cup of coffee, and watching tiny little fingers reach under the door.
Struggling is trying to get the kids buckled into the car with both of them kicking, crying, and arching their backs while the neighbor watches from across the street.
Struggling is cussing under your breath because your 5-year-old tells you he forgot to brush his teeth on the way to school.
Struggling is dropping your baby off at school for the first time and watching him walk into that building like the big boy he is becoming.
Struggling is the mental list in your head you try to write down but always forget something.
Struggling is trying to potty train your toddler who continues to pee all over the carpet.
Struggling is a 12-hour road trip for a family vacation with two kids in the back seat who won’t stop poking each other.
Struggling is trying to take your family out for a semi-nice dinner, but the toddler throws a fork at an innocent bystander, so you get the rest of your meal to go.
Struggling is trying to set a good example and be a role model, then accidentally dropping an ugly word in a moment of weakness.
Struggling is trying to pee in any public place with a kid in the stall with you, touching everything, then trying to sit on your lap.
Struggling is saying your kids can’t have screen time but knowing you won’t be able to fold a piece of laundry without it.
Struggling is trying to pump while you are at work in the closet your office has designated as the “Pump Room” and worrying someone will walk in on you.
Struggling is pushing for hours and hours during labor only to find out your baby has a huge head and you need a C-section.
Struggling is trying to hold yourself together when someone visits you and your 2-day-old baby, and all you want to do is cry.
Struggling is having to put yourself on the back burner for longer than you expected so you can tend to a tiny person depending on you for life.
Struggling is me. And you.
I am all of these things. You might not be all of them, but I am sure you can relate.
All moms struggle. It is so much harder than they tell you it is going to be.
But it’s OK. You have got this. I promise.
If it wasn’t hard, it might not be nearly as worth it to see your baby smile for the first time or hear their giggle every time they see you.
If it wasn’t worth it, I wouldn’t be writing this.
Gosh, it is such a struggle. But I love my tiny alarm clocks more than life itself.
I know you worry you are messing it all up. That they might not turn out how you imagined.
But you have to take that risk to gain the reward of having your babies kiss and hug you and tell you they love you.
That is when you feel the struggle melt away. It might only melt away for a minute, but that minute is worth all the struggles in the world.
Previously published on the author’s blog