You Don't Have to Do Motherhood Alone | Overstuffed Overstuffed

Wednesday, May 04, 2016

You Don't Have to Do Motherhood Alone

I am not ashamed to say that I couldn't "do motherhood" all by myself. In the 16 years that I have been a mother, I have had a support system of angels who have helped me and for which I am incredibly grateful.

Motherhood doesn't have to be lonely. It takes a village—who is in yours? #overstuffedlife

I'm thankful for my husband. We are on this parenting journey together and he is truly my partner. He supports and lifts me when I feel like I am failing. He loves our daughters as fiercely as I do, and we make an excellent team.

I'm thankful for my own mother, who gives me advice. She has helped me financially so I could afford to give my kids more opportunities while my husband was still in graduate school. In the relatively small amount of time that we lived close to her, she was always willing to help watch my babies while I taught voice lessons. And even now, when we live thousands of miles apart, she FaceTimes my children regularly. Sophia loves to FaceTime Mamah while she is cleaning her room so Mamah (who is a cleaning genius), can "help" her.

I am thankful for the many friends who have been there for me. I think often of the many, many women who helped me with my children when I was bedridden during pregnancies. The many friends who would show up unannounced to do my dishes or bring a meal because they knew I couldn't do it. The friends who carpool with me for dance lessons or who trade babysitting with me because I can't be 3 places at one time.

I'm also so thankful to my friends for just having conversations with me about our parenting challenges. I don't feel alone when I talk to them—I know we're all in the trenches together and that none of us has this mom thing down perfectly!

I'm thankful to the church leaders and teachers who have helped teach my children the gospel. I'm thankful for their righteous examples, and I'm so glad that my girls look up to their Primary and Young Women leaders.

I'm thankful for school teachers that have taught my children math and science. If it were left up to me to teach math and science, my children would be woefully ignorant in those areas. I'm thankful for the teachers who have helped my children learn to be hardworkers, and for the teachers who have instilled in them a love of music or reading or chess.

Most of all, I'm thankful for the divine help that I am given on this motherhood journey. For the whisperings of the Holy Spirit to give me guidance and to help me understand what my children need most. For a loving Father in Heaven who hears my daily prayers regarding the welfare of my daughters and who gives me patience and helps me to learn vital lessons through mothering them.

I know that the ultimate responsibility to raise my children belongs to me and my husband, but I am so thankful for the proverbial village that is here to help us. We don't rely on that village to raise our children for us, but it is nice to have someone to turn to when we need a little extra help.

I love this painting by Annie Henry depicting a mother and her child, but with an army of angels behind her. We don't have to do motherhood alone, and I love the reminder in the painting that we are surrounded by angels—both mortal and immortal—who buoy us up in our journey as mothers.

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