Our Keepsake Journal is Here! 🎉


I’m losing my job. Not the kind that I go to from Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; the other kind of full time job, the one of a stay at home mom. Nearly ten years ago I quit my successful career to stay-at-home and raise my twins. It was the easiest and yet most difficult decision I’ve ever made. At times it’s very nearly killed me. But the day I put them on that school bus for the first time, through the gallons of tears spilling down my face, the thoughts began.

What am I supposed to do now? The people who for five years had been my sole purpose of being are now in school for seven hours a day. How will I fill my days? Who am I beyond just being “Johnny’s and Susie’s” mom? What do I even like anymore? What am I good at? Those first few years of elementary school I started to reclaim my life a bit. I became addicted to exercise, forced my mind to engage on a very small scale with some freelance writing and began to dig out from the chaos that the first five years of having twins bring. I also volunteered at school every chance I could get so that I could remain as big of a part of my kids lives as possible. I thought that by volunteering I was showing them how much I cared and wanted to be a part of this new life they had that didn’t include me. I have come to realize that all the volunteering has been just as much for me—if not more so. I’ve been desperately trying to hold on to them and to my sense of purpose. And now as they get ready to head to upper elementary school next year, where rumor has it parents are not just unwelcome but unwanted, I feel that desperation growing.

With no choice but to let go even more (bless my heart when they actually leave the house and go to college), I am having what I’ve started referring to as my mid-mom-life crisis. The conversations with myself go something like this: Should I go back to work? But what about when they get sick at school or need a ride to practice? Who is going to be there to pick up the pieces when things inevitably fall apart? Look at my friends who work in schools—a nearly ideal set up in terms of schedules and being home when the kids are home—even they struggle when breaks don’t align or someone wakes up with a fever. What would I even do for work? After nine years out of the traditional workforce, am I really qualified to step back in where I left off? Who would hire me? And is that even what interests me anymore? I really enjoy learning, should I go back to school? Is that a waste of time and money when I’m currently not even using the college education I have? When exactly did I lose my mojo? Where is that girl that knew what she wanted and was ready for the next challenge? And so it goes. Over. And Over. And Over.

I thought I was alone in this relentless struggle until I started opening up to friends. The more moms I talked to, the more I realized this is an epidemic among stay-at-home moms who have made it past the early stages of childhood. Many are lost, wandering, trying to find our purpose. Don’t get me wrong—we are some lucky ladies. We are in a position where working or not working is an option. And that is a luxury I will never underestimate or take for granted. But that luxury comes with a price. And the price is a piece of our own identity.

If you are reading this article in hopes that I have the solution, get ready to be disappointed. I’ve done things like take Italian classes online, get back into playing tennis, and set aggressive goals for reading books so that I can be semi-interesting at cocktail parties. But it’s all grasping at straws and distracting myself from the real question of, “what is my purpose?” In college they had guidance counselors who helped steer you in the right direction. Is there such a thing as a mid-mom-life crisis counselor?

The one good thing that has come out of this struggle is what I call “momversations”—conversations between mothers that are vulnerable and difficult and necessary. In a world filled with picture perfect lives being thrown in our faces on social media, it can be hard to admit that things aren’t always as peachy as they seem to be. Sometimes just knowing you’re not alone is enough. So reach out, pick up the phone or schedule a coffee date with a friend—start a momversation. It’s certainly cheaper than a new Ferrari.

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available now!

Order Now

Check out our new Keepsake Companion Journal that pairs with our So God Made a Mother book!

Order Now
So God Made a Mother's Story Keepsake Journal

Laurie Larsh

Laurie Larsh is a freelance writer & travel blogger. She has paraglided in the Swiss Alps, hiked a glacier in Norway and jumped off a 1,400-year-old Italian bridge--none of which have prepared her for parenting tweens. Check out her travel insights for adults and kids at www.goexplauring.com.

Round 2 in the Passenger Seat is Even Harder

In: Motherhood, Teen
Teen boy behind the wheel, color photo

Here I am, once again, in the passenger seat. The driver’s side mirrors are adjusted a little higher. The seat is moved back to fit his growing teenage limbs. The rearview mirror is no longer tilted to see what’s going on in the backseat. Yellow stickers screaming “Student Driver,” are plastered to the sides of the car. The smile on his face is noticeable. The fear in mine is hard to hide. These are big moments for both of us. For him, it’s the beginning of freedom. Exiting the sidestreets of youth and accelerating full speed into the open road...

Keep Reading

Here on the Island of Autism Parenting

In: Motherhood
Son on dad's shoulders looking at sunset over water

Hey, you. Yes, you there: mom to a kid on the spectrum. Well, you and I know they’re so much more than that. But sometimes those few words seem so all-consuming. So defining. So defeating. I see you when you’re done. That was me earlier today. I had to send a picture of a broken windshield to my husband. I prefaced the picture with the text, “You’re going to be so mad.” And you know what? He saw the picture, read my text, and replied, “I love you. The windshield can be fixed. Don’t worry. Just come home.” I think,...

Keep Reading

We’re Walking the Road of Twin Loss Together

In: Grief, Loss, Motherhood
Mother and son walk along beach holding hands

He climbed into our bed last week, holding the teddy bear that came home in his twin brother’s hospital grief box almost 10 years earlier. “Mom, I really miss my brother. And do you see that picture of me over there with you, me and his picture in your belly? It makes me really, really sad when I look at it.” A week later, he was having a bad day and said, “I wish I could trade places with my brother.” No, he’s not disturbed or mentally ill. He’s a happy-go-lucky little boy who is grieving the brother who grew...

Keep Reading

Somewhere Between Wife and Mom, There Is a Woman

In: Living, Motherhood
Woman standing alone in field smiling

Sometimes, it’s hard to remember there is a woman behind the mom. At home, you feel caught between two worlds. Mom world and wife world. Sometimes it’s hard to balance both. We don’t exactly feel sexy in our leggings and messy mom bun. We don’t feel sexy at the end of the day when we are mentally, emotionally, and physically exhausted from being a mom all day. The truth is we want to feel like ourselves again. We just aren’t sure where we fit in anymore. RELATED: I Fear I’ve Lost Myself To Motherhood We know the kids only stay...

Keep Reading

Until I See You in Heaven, I’ll Cherish Precious Memories of You

In: Grief, Loss, Motherhood
Toddler girl with bald head, color photo

Your memory floats through my mind so often that I’m often seeing two moments at once. I see the one that happened in the past, and I see the one I now live each day. These two often compete in my mind for importance. I can see you in the play of all young children. Listening to their fun, I hear your laughter clearly though others around me do not. A smile might cross my face at the funny thing you said once upon a time that is just a memory now prompted by someone else’s young child. The world...

Keep Reading

Friendship Looks Different Now That Our Kids Are Older

In: Friendship, Living, Motherhood
Two women and their teen daughters, color photo

When my kids were young and still in diapers, my friends and I used to meet up at Chick-fil-A for play dates. Our main goal was to maintain our sanity while our kids played in the play area. We’d discuss life, marriage, challenges, sleep deprivation, mom guilt, and potty-training woes. We frequently scheduled outings to prevent ourselves from going insane while staying at home. We’d take a stroll around the mall together, pushing our bulky strollers and carrying diaper bags. Our first stop was always the coffee shop where we’d order a latte (extra espresso shot) and set it in...

Keep Reading

Moms Take a Hard Look in the Mirror When Our Girls Become Tweens

In: Motherhood, Teen, Tween
Mother and tween daughter reading

We all know about mean girls. They’re in the movies we go to see, the television shows we watch, and the books we read. These fictional divas are usually exaggerated versions of the real thing: troubled cheerleaders with a couple of sidekicks following in their faux-fabulous footsteps. The truth about mean girls is more complex. Sometimes, they aren’t kids you would expect to be mean at all: the quiet girls, sweet and innocent. Maybe she’s your kid. Maybe she’s mine. As our daughters approach their teen years, we can’t help but reflect on our own. The turmoil. The heartbreak. The...

Keep Reading

A Mother’s Love is the Best Medicine

In: Kids, Motherhood
Child lying on couch under blankets, color photo

When my kids are sick, I watch them sleep and see every age they have ever been at once. The sleepless nights with a fussy toddler, the too-hot cheeks of a baby against my own skin, the clean-up duty with my husband at 3 a.m., every restless moment floods my thoughts. I can almost feel the rocking—so much rocking—and hear myself singing the same lullaby until my voice became nothing but a whisper. I can still smell the pink antibiotics in a tiny syringe. Although my babies are now six and nine years old, the minute that fever spikes, they...

Keep Reading

Here’s to the Saturday Mornings

In: Living, Motherhood
Baby in bouncer next to mama with coffee cup, color photo

Here’s to the Saturday mornings—the part of the week that kind of marks the seasons of our lives. I’ve had so many types of Saturdays, each just a glimpse of what life holds at the time. There were Saturdays spent sleeping in and putting off chores after a long week of school. And some Saturdays waking up on the floor in a friend’s living room after talking and prank calling all night. I’ve spent many Saturday mornings walking through superstitious pre-game routines on the way to the gym, eating just enough breakfast to fuel me for the game, but not...

Keep Reading

From a Veteran Special Needs Mom: Don’t Lose Hope

In: Living, Motherhood, Teen
Woman making heart symbol with hands

When my son was newly diagnosed with autism, I was reading everything—the good, the bad, and the ugly. So much so that to this day, I can barely handle reading anything on the subject because I overdosed so badly on it. I went through a grieving process as all families do. Grieving my expectations, hopes, and dreams. It was during this time that all hell broke loose. My child, like a lot of other people who experience autism, has a lot of other psychological and medical issues that interact with his autism. The combination of all those things led to...

Keep Reading