I was particularly surprised to read about a woman who began a blog primarily to criticize other blogging mothers.
Okay. Maybe that's not so surprising, we do see a lot of criticism: Our choices in childbirth (epidural or natural?), milk (formula or breast?) and education (public school or homeschool?) are particularly hot button issues among the mommy crowd.
But that's not what she's criticizing.
She is criticizing the mothers who write about the fact that sometimes motherhood is (dare I say it?) hard.
I've done a lot of hard things in my life.
I spent 18 months on an LDS mission in a foreign country, far away from my family. I was spit on, yelled at and mocked. I went through some of the most heart-wrenching trials I have ever endured in that time. I walked for hours a day. I had blisters on my feet all the time. It was hard.
But it ended. I eventually came home.
I went to college. That was hard, too. I remember one semester of trying to balance a full-time job with some crazy amount of credits that I had to have approved by the provost because it was more than I was allowed to take, opera rehearsals, a boyfriend, and being on a medication that was pretty mood-altering. Yes. Very hard.
But it ended. That semester finished. I eventually graduated from college.
Then my husband went to college. And then he went to college again and again. And that was hard. We were poorer than church mice. We had kids we could barely support. We lived in awful student housing and we depended upon government loans and family for our survival. That was pretty hard.
But it ended. He graduated.
Pregnancy is probably one of the most difficult things I have ever been through in my life. Three times I went through hyperemesis. I spent time in the hospital, with PICC lines and Zofran pumps. And I still threw up ten or fifteen times a day, every day. I lost weight. I could barely get out of bed. I couldn't take care of my kids. That was really hard.
But guess what? Even pregnancy eventually ends.
And then I was a mother.
And it is hard, too. I don't know if it is harder than my mission, or school, or health issues. In fact, I don't think it actually is. I think I can think of a lot of things that are way more difficult than motherhood. But that doesn't mean it's not hard. Because it is. It still remains one of the hardest things I have ever done.
But I think the hardest thing about it, is that it won't end. I can't say to myself, "Self, this is hard stuff. But don't worry...only ___ more months and it will all be over." Nope, motherhood doesn't work that way. Sure, I can divide it up into bite-sized pieces because there are parts of motherhood that do end.
Potty training will end.
The threatening threes and the terrible twos will end.
Adolescence will end.
Fourth-grade math will end.
But there will always be something else. Even when your children are grown and moved away, your motherhood will never end. And it will probably still be hard. It is for my mom. There are always going to be things your children are doing and experiencing that provide difficulty for you as a mother. Because you love them.
Motherhood doesn't end.
And that's why it's hard.
But it's also why it is the most rewarding and wonderful thing we can do.