“Have you heard of the phrase ‘If you don’t have anything nice to say. Don’t say anything at all’? That’s all that has been running through my head for the past few days.
I’m near the end of what seemed to be one of the hardest, most tiring weeks of my life as a mother and wife. My wild child was getting over some type of virus that doubled his ornery. My nerves were shot, my boiling point was BOILING, and I was just flat-out done. I needed a break. A huge break. Not just a run to the grocery store. Not an evening to myself. I was at the point where I needed at least an entire day and night alone, if not an entire weekend. ‘Keep dreaming, sister, because that is NEVER happening for you,’ I thought to myself.
Time alone was far and few between along with date nights. The last time my husband and I got away for the weekend was over 2 years ago!
Now I know what you’re thinking. ‘Oh, it can’t be that hard. I see moms do it all the time.’ However, I am a stay at home mother. My job literally never ends. It is 24/7. No hopping in the car, driving to work, clocking in, doing my 8 hours, clocking out, driving home to my kids and being with them for 2 to 3 hours for the night routine, and then putting them to bed. No, this means I’m up at 6:45 a.m. The second my eyes open, before I can even pee, my job starts! My job technically doesn’t end until maybe I get a full night’s rest, which is a solid 6 hours for me and those come far and few between. Most nights, I’m not laying my head on a pillow until 12 a.m.
From cooking, cleaning, taking care of kids– REPEAT REPEAT REPEAT. I know all my other fellow stay at home moms can relate!!
Again, I know what you’re thinking. It cannot be that hard… Again, let me paint another picture.
Our kids are with us 24/7. They don’t head to grandma’s for the night or even a few hours on the weekend. We lost our second car, due to my husband getting a blood clot in his brain and not being able to work for a few months, which put us behind tremendously. So when I say I am a stay at home mother, that literally means I am a stay at home mother. I am in the house with the kids from the time my husband heads out the door at 7:45 a.m. until he comes home at night around 7-ish.
Like I said, alone time is nonexistent, to the point I was actually thinking about committing myself just to get a whole 72 hours ALONE. (Kidding, of course, or am I?) All jokes aside, I was exhausted.
A very good friend of mine was going on a bachelorette getaway this weekend. Now some could say I was a tad jealous. But to be honest, I was a bit hurt at this point. When I got married, I had a destination wedding. Long story short, she didn’t end up making it to my wedding. I grew up with this girl. I’ve known her since I was 5. To say I was hurt was an understatement… and I saw her going on a getaway bachelorette party for someone who isn’t nearly as close to her. Like I said before, I was a tad on the jealous side, maybe even a tad envious, and actually to be 100% honest, a bit confused and 200% hurt!
Anyways, I pushed it aside and thought to myself, ‘It’s okay. There’s a time for everything and soon it will be your time! Patience is key! Right?’
I often try and do things I enjoy and make me happy, whether I have to bring the kids along or not. My newfound love is photography. Photographing the sunrise to be exact. I call myself a sunrise chaser. Nine times out of ten with a baby in tow, if not more children. This sacred time I have carved out early in the morning for myself has been one of my saving graces! I had just finished up editing one of my sunrise pictures from that morning…
Then it started. Snapchat. She was snapping what seemed like her EVERY move that weekend or so I thought. Not only was she posting them to her story, but she was sending them directly to me!
Of course, I downplayed it all and acted like it didn’t bother me. Now don’t get me wrong. She deserves this trip. I am happy for her and I truly wanted her to have a wonderful time. However, on the inside, I was crumbling … crumbling into thousands of pieces, wishing I could just get a night without my kids. A night just for me, a night I so desperately deserved. That phrase just circled in my head, ‘If you don’t have anything nice to say then don’t say anything at all.’
The moral of this story is, ladies, if you have a stay at home mom friend or even a mom friend out there who you know doesn’t get time to herself or the alone time without her children that she needs or deserves, don’t be that friend. Don’t be rude, don’t be selfish and only think about you. You never know what the next person may be going through silently. Always try to be thoughtful of other people’s situations, circumstances, and feelings.
If you see a mom struggling, offer to take her kids for a few hours or the night and actually be genuine about it. She may not accept your offer but I promise your thoughtfulness and kindness will go a lot further than being THAT friend ever will. Be the sunrise in someone’s life!”
This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Ashley Stollings, 29, of Ohio. Follow her journey on Instagram here. Do you have a similar experience? We’d like to hear your important journey. Submit your own story here. Be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories, and YouTube for our best videos.
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