‘Motherhood is not a funeral to your old life. You don’t need to mourn it anymore. What makes ME happy? No more guilt.’

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“Do you ever sit down at the end of the night, after wiping down another counter, putting away another toy and folding another little t-shirt, and just think, where have I gone?

When the only time you have to yourself is the 5 minutes you lay in bed utterly exhausted and fight to stay awake to just have one minute, one second, to be yourself again.

You ever look at yourself in the mirror, wondering where you went?

Your eyes are heavy, your stomach looks like a slow deflating whoopee cushion as you quickly dress or wash your hands, ready to tend to someone else for the 5th time.

Do you ever miss the old you? Me too.

Some days I am one chicken nugget away from a nervous breakdown.

Sometimes I feel like I am the discarded crust on my child’s plate.

But you smile, you get up and you try.

You try really hard, every day.

And sometimes society frowns upon you anyway. Sometimes you frown upon yourself.

The pressure is immense, isn’t it? Day after day.

You’re meant to take care of your family and look after three kids and still be a sexy, and be hot. You’re meant to still have it together, but not too much, otherwise you’re a neglectful monster.

And you’re supposed to be grateful, and never should you be sitting on your bed saying, what about me? Never should you be feeling like you want a career, or you want more, or you want a break.

And what’s the reward? The feeling of emptiness.

Well screw that. You don’t deserve that.

I am the mother who wants to play with their kids for endless hours.

But I’m also the mother who loves endless hours to herself.

I am a mother who feels like just being a mother is enough, but I’m also one who still has ambitions and dreams and wants and needs.

I am the mother who is grateful to be called mom, but I’m also worthy of being called my name.

I am mom and I am me, and both make me great.

No more guilt, no more pressures and no more expectations that leave you exhausted night after night.

Motherhood is not a funeral to your old life. You don’t need to mourn it anymore.

Ask yourself, what makes ME happy? And go get it, go do it and celebrate the birth of YOU; a woman who loves her children, but loves herself just as much.”

Laura Mazza – Mum on the Run

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Laura Mazza of Mum on the Run, where it originally appeared. Submit your story here, and subscribe to our best love stories here.

Read more encouraging words from Laura:

‘She’s not broken’: To the man whose wife or partner has anxiety

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