Almost as if everyone could see beyond my expertly applied make up, my carefully blow dried hair and my agonising false smile to the cavernous hole that was forming in my chest.
What happened? What could do this to me?
Quite simply… Mothering.
Nothing in my life has knocked my confidence about more than my desire to be a great Mum.
I know there is no perfect way to parent, no guarantees I can buy off the shelf, and yet when I am in the trenches with a wayward child, there is nothing I want more than to be handed a guide-book with all the correct answers.
There are times when as a family we are all humming along beautifully, with constant evidence my cherubs are growing, learning and truly thriving.
And then there are days when I feel I am getting rammed from every angle and I am screaming from every pore.
I worry for their futures, I second guess my decisions and I feel stripped bare by it all.
How do I get them to care more, be on time and do their best?
Do I back off, add more pressure? Speak up or be quiet?
Are they too old, too young, too molly coddled?
Am I doing too much, or not enough?
Was that melt down my fault, why am I yelling, am I a horrible Mum?
The not knowing if what I’m doing is going to work out is excruciating.
The unknown is terrifying.
When we care, when we’re deeply invested we’ll encounter self-doubt, fear and worry.
When we do great things and lead amazing lives we continually step toward uncertainty and away from comfort and it’s scary out there.
We make choices based on what we know in that moment and we wrap our heart around it.
I am a wonderful mother who makes mistakes.
I am a loving mother who over protects… and is working on it.
I am a glorious human and I give my heart and soul to all that I do… And that’s what leading a meaningful life is to me.
So please… if life is throwing you curve balls, knocking you off your feet and you are swirling in self-doubt please remember this.
Lead with your heart, speak your truth (however hard) and forgive your missteps.
Each raw moment is an opportunity to learn, to grow and do differently.
Please do not shrink back toward comfort, drown in self-doubt and give up on moving forward because you don’t have a guarantee.
A fulfilled life is daring, It’s gutsy. Its raw and honest.
It does not come with certainties.
It comes with truth, curiosity, experiments and the determination to grow and have a go.
Will my children grow up to be all that I imagined? In truth I hope they grow up to be all that they imagine.