Written by Julissa Stewart
Motherhood is tough - but your mental health matters. So many people are dependent of you, but who do you depend on?
This Mother's Day, I encourage you to take a break. If that means not getting dressed all day, then rock those pjs all day long. If that means not cleaning the house, or cooking a gourmet meal, then don't do it. Take a break. You deserve it more than you realize.
It's hard. I know. I may not know exactly what it's like to be a mother (at least to a human, does being a cat mom count?!), but I do know what it's like to live with mental illness. On a good day, getting by is doable. But bad days can feel like hell. Mental illness robs you of your energy, passion, emotion, life. It can be debilitating, and make your whole body feel like you've been hit by a bus, and you're still expected to run a marathon. It can suck out every ounce of energy you have left and prevent you from completing the simplest of tasks - brushing your teeth, taking a shower, getting dressed, or even just leaving your bed.
I can't imagine what that must feel like when you have a child depending on you. You're expected to be superwoman 24/7 - complete all of your tasks with ease, plus ours, and then some. All of that, on top of other tasks such as cooking, cleaning, eating, breathing, and somehow squeezing in a bit of self-care. Then there's making time for your friends, other family members, juggling this with a paid job, and more. That's just what moms are supposed to do, right?
No. There is no one size fits all suit to being a mother. Do what you need to do to get by. I understand, and I want to remind you that everything you are doing/have done/continue to do has been worth it. You are loved beyond measure, regardless of whether or not you have been reminded lately. You are superwoman even if you do not get all those things done. You're doing the best you can, and that's all that matters. Because your son/daughter loves you, whether they are here or not.
To the moms who lost a son or daughter to mental illness:
Unfortunately, I know many parents who have had to experience the loss of a child from mental illness. I want to remind you that it's not your fault. It never has been, and it never will be. I encourage you to look back on Jill Martin's previous blog post,
You are still a mother, despite this loss. You still deserve to be recognized and reminded of how amazing you are.
To all mothers:
You are amazing. You are loved. You are the barrel of hope that reminds us to keep going. You're still here, still breathing, still living. and you'll always be a damn good mom.
In the wise words of Rupi Kaur, "here you are living, despite it all".