Wonder Woman: What Every Momma Needs to Hear
Catching up with a previous co-worker on LinkedIn today, her words caught you off guard. In conversation she said,
You are Wonder Woman if you can continue working, keep the kids at home, and still manage to do virtual learning with your son.
Wonder Woman? The truth is, you’ve never once felt like Wonder Woman this year. You haven’t even had a moment to think.
You are surviving. You’re doing what needs to be done for your children to be safe and feel loved.
If others are thinking it, why is it so strange to hear? Maybe it’s not Wonder Woman that comes to mind, but it’s time to admit some good things about yourself.
You carried the weight of this year with as much grace as you could muster.
It’s far from easy doing all that you do.
Leading conference calls, completing school assignments in between meetings, and playing Barbies on the floor at request is a regular day.
In truth, it’s been a mental marathon.
Monday rolls around and you know you have to gear up for your mind to take off in a million directions. Despite feeling an internal swirl, you try to remain consistent and available for your family. It’s not easy, not even a little.
There have been days where you get off the phone and feel tears rolling down your face. Work is stressful trying to work with difficult personalities. There are holidays you know you are missing with extended family. The frustration and loss of it all run deep. It’s hard to shake most of the time.
You’re human. Stress and sadness have their limits.
Between your marketing role, small children needing your attention, and assuming the role of at-home-teacher, you have juggled so much for a year now.
Really pause and give yourself some credit. You have pulled this off pretty well.
You consciously decide to choose joy.
Years before COVID, you’ve experienced firsthand what deep sadness feels like. Both your father and niece were diagnosed with cancer. That initial moment of finding out is something you will never forget.
There have been dark days even before a virus settled in and created a huge disruption to life. There was a time very vivid in your memories, crying in a hospital room with your sister discussing what-ifs.
You understand what life is like living under a dark cloud of uncertainty. And you’ve seen the power of choosing joy to get you through to the other side.
Being isolated from extended family and friends, you have continued to focus on the light. When you wake up and see your daughter's face smiling back at you it’s a good day. Taking off an hour in the afternoon to have a snowball fight is well worth cleaning up wet clothes in the hallway.
You’re making memories, and you’re living your best COVID era possible.
You have kids that know they are loved.
You scoop them up and hug them out of nowhere. You kiss their soft cheeks when they are cuddled right beside you.
“I love you" is what you say multiple times to them. And in sweet voices, they say, “I love you, Mommy.”
You see how quickly they are growing. Your little boy looks so much like his father approaching his 6th birthday. He wants to tell you all about his Zelda video game and the divine beast that Link has to beat. You have no idea what he’s talking about, but you pause because it’s what he cares to tell you.
It’s tough with so many things to do and feeling like you don’t always get to everything. You worry about how rushed it was getting through your son’s school assignments or how much independent play your little girl did on her own today.
But they are loved, and they feel your love. They hear it from your lips when you remind them that they are smart, strong, and kind. They know it in your actions when you trade-off doing your own thing to sit down and play a game of their choosing.
You’re a great mom. You need to remember this on really hard days.
You have faith that this too shall pass.
You know life won’t always be like this.
Soon more people will be vaccinated and the cocoon you have been living in with your family of 4 will be freed. The time will come when you all go in different directions again.
With this realization comes mixed emotions.
A feeling of relief because some of the fear of keeping your family safe will be gone. No extra worry will be piled on the existing concerns that motherhood already creates.
Sadness surfaces because in this isolating time, all of you have grown close. You’re scared of ending this intimate experience together.
Your two kids have formed a strong sibling bond they would have missed out on in two separate classes at daycare. The times they have tried to console one another have touched your heart. Seeing them running around in capes laughing has brought a smile to your face on long days. It has been a joy to bear witness to more of these everyday moments.
There is excitement knowing you will be able to reconnect with family and friends in-person. Finally, more time together and less time talking through a screen. Meme and Papal can take the kids on an overnight stay. Perhaps even dinner in an actual restaurant will feel ok again.
You have supported your family in moments of frustration and screamed with them when the virus has stolen special birthdays with grandparents. Tears and all it has been quite a ride. You have done everything to confront all the emotions and take it one day at a time.
This moment won’t last forever.
Mentally, there has never been a more challenging time. Through the isolation, laughs, messes, cuddles, breakdowns, and memories made, you have continued to love.
From someone else looking in, maybe they call it Wonder Woman. You just call it a mom who has been doing her best in a really hard time.
Maybe it has been enough. All considered you survived.