‘She just listens to the ceiling fan spin. Her hurt and doubt soak her pillowcase with tears.’: Woman prays for others struggling with acceptance, ‘Dry her tears, God’

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“Tonight, I’m praying for the mama who is still wide awake. Staring into the dark, she just listens to the ceiling fan spin. A highlight reel of her failures keeps playing through her head.  She’s exhausted all day, but when her head hits the pillow, her mind suddenly wakes up.

And then, it gets really freaking mean.

‘Why aren’t you in better shape?’ it hisses in her head.

‘Your husband is aging better than you.’

‘Why can’t you be a more fun person?’

‘Why can’t you be a more present mom?’

‘Why can’t you keep the house a little cleaner… cook healthy meals… join the PTA… be a better friend… be more interesting…’

The hamster wheel never stops spinning, and the voice never stops accusing.

By midnight she’s tossing and turning, chewing on the ugly words echoing in her mind.  By one, she realizes sleep won’t come. So, she starts Googling solutions.

How to lose weight. How to get more organized. How to discipline a toddler. How to get the spark back in my marriage. How much is Botox?

By two, she’s exhausted from the thoughts, the Googling, and the tears. She has to wake up in a few hours, anyway, so she finally lays her head down.  She closes her eyes and wills herself asleep, with her heart still hurting and her mind still hissing quiet criticisms.

I pray, God, you’ll hold that mama tonight.  I pray you’ll remind her that she is enough.

Good enough. Beautiful enough. Wife enough. Interesting enough. Mom enough. Friend enough. ENOUGH.

Exactly as she is.

Perfect in her imperfections. Made and loved by You.

God, I pray You speak truth to her aching heart.  Teach her there is grace enough for every mistake. Show her joy comes in the morning, and her family loves her. So much. Tell her she is cherished, God. Without changing one single thing about herself, she is loved.

Tonight, I pray for the mama whose heart aches when it’s dark outside. Whose hurt and doubt soak her pillowcase with tears.

Dry her tears, God. Hold her near. Let her know she doesn’t hurt alone. So many of us have walked that valley — and we are still here. YOU are here.

Show her the light at the end of the tunnel. Lead her mind out of the darkness.

Let her feel loved. Remind her that she matters. Because we are all loved, and we all matter.

In His precious name,


Courtesy of Mary Katherine Backstrom

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Mary Katherine Backstrom. Mary’s book Mom Babble: The Messy Truth about Motherhood is available here. Follow Mary on Instagram here.  Submit your story here, and be sure to subscribe to our best love stories here.

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