A whimper in the dark, the clock flashing 5 o’clock am.
Foreheads burning red, fevers untouched by medicine delivered right on schedule.
What little was consumed of dinner, now steaming in a pile that threatens this pregnant mama to lose her own.
It’s the other side of motherhood, the one that doesn’t look so pretty, even with the Instagram filters.
It’s the side that beats me down, defeats my best of intentions.
When the dark days of motherhood threaten to overwhelm.
It’s the dread that fills me when another one wakes in the night. So tired, my brain thinks. Just want to sleep forever.
It’s the guilt I feel the next morning, when I realize that my husband has gotten up with the baby, letting me sleep, prompting me to pick a ridiculous fight over breakfast just because I…what? Feel badly?
It’s the feeling that I can’t take one.more.minute of whining, crying, laundry spilling out around me, crumbs, melted popsicles stained what is surely a most unnatural red on my white tablecloth.
Exhaustion is a complicated beast. And one that brings out the worst in me.
Because really it’s not about them.
It’s about me.
And the self-doubt that permeates my soul in the dark days.
The whispered feelings of I can’t do this. I’m not strong enough. I’m a bad mom.
The feelings that creep out into the rest of my soul.
You’re not a good writer. No one cares. Why do you bother? What a loser. Oh, and that’s not all baby bump, that much is clear.
And yet we soldier one, finding the bright moments amongst the dark, clinging to those that keep us nourished and fed for the journey ahead.
One weak baby smile in the dark, too tired to muster a giggle.
One tiny arm laid across my back, a gesture of sweet, sweet love.
One head rested across my chest, the only place that seems to bring comfort.
I am enough.
This is enough.