I’m writing this to you while you are away on a business trip. You left this morning, and I caught myself watching you put the last things in your luggage. I was standing there in my pajamas, trying to calm the baby down, while our eldest one was playing/screaming (that goes together for toddlers) in the background.
Dear husband, at that moment, I was jealous. I was jealous of you looking so smart in your suit while I knew that I would yet again struggle to take a shower or even brush my hair.
Don’t get me wrong. I don’t want to have your life. I know how hard it is to juggle family and your demanding job. I am thankful and happy to be able to stay with the kids for now.
But, dear husband, sometimes it is hard. It is hard when days become nights and nights become days. It is hard when pregnancy clothes are too big and normal clothes too small, when, instead of your body, you only see bruises and scars, and dark circles under the eyes when you look in the mirror. It is hard when you have not really been out for the last two years and know that you won’t be out much for the coming months neither. It is hard to put the kids first all the time, to nourish them every day, literally and figuratively.
“I just want you to hear me. I want you to see me. That’s all. There is nothing more I’m asking you to do.”
My dear husband, I am not complaining. And I am not asking for solutions nor would I want to change my life for anything in the world. I just want you to hear me. I want you to see me. That’s all. There is nothing more I’m asking you to do.
I want you to see me, see us the way we used to be, not so long ago. You have always been proud of me, of what I accomplished at work. Of how I fought for my goals and got things done.
Dressed in my pajamas and some dried tears, I sometimes doubt that you still see me that way.
But here I am.
I am still there.
Fighting for my goals harder than ever before. Fighting to keep the kids alive. To keep them healthy. To keep them happy and entertained. Fighting to raise human beings who care. Who love. Who challenge. Who are curious and have goals themselves.
Dear husband, I just want you to know that I am happy. That I am exactly where I want to be. Through my current exhaustion and complaints, through my tears and fears, I want you to see my smile and happiness.
Because this is what being a mom is like: it is tears and exhaustion. It is loneliness and longing for some alone time. It is chaos, fears and guilt. Lots of guilt. It is some jealousy and doubts.
“This is what being a mom is like: It is tears and exhaustion. It is chaos, fears and guilt. ... But above all, it is happiness.”
But above all, it is happiness. A happiness you can’t compare with anything else. A happiness that nothing or nobody else can give you. A happiness that fulfills you.
Being a mom is living all these contradictions at the same time. Every day. That’s what it is.
Dear husband, I am sorry for some words that have been exchanged and should not have been. And for some that should have but have been left unspoken.
I don’t ask you to understand. I don’t ask you to feel the way I do or find solutions.
I just want you to hear me.
I want you to see me.
That is all.