From one mother to another, I have some things I feel the need to share with you.  They are coming from a place of love, and complete understanding.  I hear the deep sighs and I see the tired look in your eyes, and I believe you are long overdue for some appreciation, so here it is.

I know the incredible amount of work you put into your home, and your family day in and day out, and you probably don’t hear the words “thank you” nearly as often as you should. Being a good mother takes an excessive amount of energy, and an endless supply of patience and love.  It takes a special person to selflessly put others needs before her own, so from one hardworking Momma to another, thank you.

You are beautiful.  I know there are many days when you hurriedly get the kids ready for school, and catch a glimpse of your reflection on your way out the door and think, “Wow I’m a mess, I’ve really let myself go”. I think it’s important that you realize what the definition of beauty really is.

What makes someone beautiful is not hair that falls perfectly into place or flawless make up.  True beauty is defined by ones soul.  The “mom bun”, sweatpants and natural face are a symbol of the immeasurable amount of love you have for the children you have created.  Anyone can slap make up on and straighten their hair, it takes a special person to be more concerned with ensuring their loved ones are ready for the day first. That’s what makes you so beautiful.

Your body is perfect. I am sure you’ve have heard the old saying “stretch marks mean you’ve earned your stripes, embrace them!”.  I can tell you as a mom who’s stomach has been stretched to it’s limits and beyond; that this saying doesn’t help me feel any sexier when my husband’s hand brushes against my stomach.

What I will tell you is this; if given the choice between having a toned flat stomach, or having your children, you would choose your babies – every time. Stretch marks are a small price to pay for a lifetime of joy.  Like a home with dashes on the wall to measure a child’s height as they grow, try to imagine these marks as a reminder for yourself, once the kids are grown up and on their own, that they were once there, that your body at one time, was their home.

You are doing great. You are! I think at times we start to feel more like servants, and less like wives and mothers. We get into a routine of cooking, cleaning, diaper changing, homework, errand running and so much more.  At the end of the day we are utterly exhausted and most times, our partners are none the wiser.  I know how hard you worked today, how much you gave, and how much you achieved.  You. Are. Amazing.

Keep in mind, that each chapter is temporary. I know there are moments when you feel that if you step on one more Lego, or hear the “Mickey Mouse” theme song one more time – that you will explode.  The sad thing is,  you will blink; and your babies will be grown ups, and they will be living on their own.  Your home will be quiet. The silence will be deafening.  The toys will be long gone, stored in the attic.  Embrace and appreciate this chaos while it’s here, because we are gonna miss the hell out of it when it’s gone.

Lastly, It’s a beautiful thing when you give your all to your family, but it’s imperative that you don’t end up losing your identity in the process. We get so caught up in the routines, and schedules and tasks that we rarely take time to do things for ourselves.  Relax.  Take a bath, go for a walk alone, meditate and give your brain a break from racing thoughts and worries. The dishes can wait.  It’s important to recharge your batteries from time to time, because you can’t pour from an empty cup.  You don’t have to feel guilty for sitting down for a bit and doing…Nothing.

Being a Mom isn’t like a regular job, where you receive accolades and promotions for doing a good job.  Sometimes even getting a thank you is like pulling teeth.  There will come a day, when your children grow up and recognize the love, strength and sacrifice that went into raising them.

We aren’t doing what we do each day for daily praise.  There is a much bigger picture that we must remain focused on when we feel like giving up. We are doing it for the day they walk across the stage to receive their diploma, the day they stand at the alter with the love of their life at the beginning of their new chapter.  We are doing it for the day they come to us as successful adults and give us a great big hug, and they say “Thank you Mom, for everything”.

You are wonderful, you are strong, you are appreciated (whether you hear it or not)  and you are making a difference. Thank you, for all that you do.