Dear mama, when you’re in the bathroom, staring at another negative pregnancy test, you are not alone. 

When you’re in the doctor’s office, awaiting your first ultrasound with a combination of anxiety and excitement, you are not alone.

When you cry in exasperation because you just don’t want to be pregnant anymore, you are not alone.

Mama, when you are moments away from meeting your newborn child, the baby your body created and kept safe for months, and you are petrified for the next steps, you are not alone.

Dear mama, when you find you’re exhausted from sleepless nights and you’re bitter toward everyone and anyone, you are not alone. 

Oh, dear mama. When your baby refuses to look at you or come to you after being at daycare for the first time and instead has been in a stranger’s arms all day, you are not alone. 

Mama, when your baby goes through the daddy stage and wants nothing to do with you and hot tears of sadness pool in your hands at the end of a long day, you are not alone. 

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When your baby takes their first steps and you exclaim in excitement while simultaneously wishing for time to slow down, you are not alone. 

Sweet mama, when your baby hits those milestones a little bit slower than the other babies, and you wonder if you’re doing something wrong, you are not alone. 

When that baby of yours cries and reaches for you as you drop them off at daycare, and the first effects of mom guilt kick in, you are not alone.

Soon enough the day comes when you go to pick up your little one from daycare, and they cry at your arrival. They’re having too much fun to go home with you, and you want to cry yourself, you are not alone.

When that rambunctious toddler falls and hits their head and you feel another sting of mom guilt, you are not alone.

Mama, your strong-willed child will yell, “I don’t like you anymore!” for the first time. When you feel tears of frustration well up because honestly, you do too much for them to hear those words, you’re not alone.

Mama, when your little one isn’t picking up potty training, and they just don’t seem to grasp it, you may feel embarrassed when other mothers talk about their little one’s progress, you are not alone. 

Mama when your little one kicks, screams, and cries on the first day of preschool while other little boys and girls seem to run in with excitement, you are not alone.

When you pick up your little one from school and they chatter about all of the fun they had and your heart swells, you are not alone. 

The day comes when you drop off your little one at school and they run in without a glance in your direction, you feel an ache in your heart. Mama, you are not alone. 

At conferences, when you’re told that your little one should be held back rather than move on to kindergarten with their classmates, you may feel confused, unsure, and sad. Mama, you are not alone.

Oh, mama, when your sweet baby, who isn’t really a baby anymore, comes home from school crying because they’ve been picked on and you desperately try to hold yourself back from going full, mama-bear mode, you are not alone. 

When your baby becomes a teenager, and they get their heart broken for the first time, you feel your heart break as well. You want to shelter your teen and protect their heart with every bone in your body, you are not alone.

Mama, when your teenager gets their driver’s license, and they’re off on the scary roads and you resist the urge to call every hour to ensure they’re still OK, you are not alone. 

Mama, your oldest or only baby moves out for college and that mom guilt builds up again. Did you make the most of your time while they lived under your roof? Did you take advantage of every free moment when they were babies, toddlers, and then the summer months leading up until this very moment?

Mama, you are not alone. 

Mama, when you cry in the shower yet again because you’re not sure if you can do this anymore. Whether it’s waking up each night with a baby and turning around to wake up each morning with a smile on your face despite the circles under your eyes. Hustling and bustling each kid to where they need to be. Working through toddler tantrums in between the chaos. Growing accustomed to your teenagers’ newfound attitude and desire for you to just go away.

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You’re exhausted. You’re tired of being pulled this direction and that direction and never being sure if you’re doing OK. If you’re doing the right thing. If you’re even doing a good job.

You wonder if anyone sees you. If they see the bags under your eyes, or if they’re judging that you’re not all put together like that other mom over there. You wonder if they can tell you’ve been crying because this is the hardest but most fulfilling job you’ve ever had.

Mama, you are not alone. I see you. The mother down the street sees you. That mama has the same thoughts you have. I have the same thoughts you have.

Motherhood is hard, it’s exhausting, it’s trying, and it’s emotional. There is no right or wrong way to raise your baby and there is no right or wrong emotions you, or your baby, should be feeling. Hug your baby tight and enjoy the little and big moments. Let them work through their happy times and their sad times. 

Continue doing your best, for you are the best mama they need. 

Mama, you are not alone. 

Ashley Daniels

Ashley is a stay-at-home mommy to three young boys. She enjoys coffee by the potful, preferably lukewarm, using the bathroom on her own, and moments of silence in quick, 5-minute increments. Ashley enjoys writing in her free time, allowing her the ability to reflect and to be grateful for the life she's been given. You can follow more of Ashley's writings at https://sheramblesandshewrites.wordpress.com/