How Can I Be Mother of the Year When I'm FREAKING OUT?!

Ummm, I think that all the time. There’s always something, big or small, that presents itself as a larger-than-life worry that stops me in my tracks. Sometimes it’s valid, and sometimes it isn’t worth a second thought. Either way, I usually entertain it longer than I need to and get myself into the What If spin cycle.

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Abby came to the Mother of the Year Facebook group with a super valid struggle that I think we can all relate to and learn from. She shared, “How can I be Mother of the Year when I’m freaking out? I’ve got about 4 weeks until baby #2 arrives and I’m not ready emotionally at all.

My thoughts are:

  • Why did we choose this?

  • What will happen to our/my relationship with #1?

  • How can I be a good mom to both?

  • Others have done this, and more, so why am I being silly freaking out?

  • Did I make the right choice to take a year off?

  • Can I actually keep the house in shape while staying home with a newborn?

Aaaaaaaannnnndddd repeat. Each day the anxiety is getting stronger.”

First of all, girl, I see you. Going from 1 to 2 babies is intense. I’m not going to sugar coat it. In fact, I’ll tell you that in the weeks after my 2nd child was born, I thought having two kids was going to be the very death of me. I even remember sitting on the deck one afternoon with my husband as the toddler girl ran in the sprinkler and the baby boy slept in the Rock ‘n Play telling Ryan that I was going to leave. The conversation went something like this:

Me: I think I’m going to leave.

Him: Ummm, ok. Where are you going?

Me: I’m not sure.

Him: Well, when are you coming back?

Me: I’m not.

I was dead serious, too. The weight of it all was resting upon my shoulders and I honestly couldn’t imagine surviving the next hour, let alone the next 18 years. And right now, if you’re thinking, “Why In the world would you share those horrible thoughts with an already-anxious mother?” Stay with me. I only share that to share this: We made it. We are still making it. Of course it’s not easy, but I’ve come to terms with the fact that I’m doing the best that I can. That there is more than enough love to go around. That a clean house is not the measure of my success. In all of this, perfection does not usher in peace.

I absolutely love this truth. Perfection does not usher in peace. Whether you’re freaking out about welcoming baby #1 or baby #10, you’re worried about a job change, a relationship crisis, or finally starting that side hustle you’ve been dreaming about. Perfection does not usher in peace.

There’s one thing to do when anxiety, fear, or stress strikes:

Find the lie and replace it with the truth. Over and over and over again, until you’ve rewired your brain to think something positive first. It can be done, but it takes work. It really does. But over and over and over again, you’ll hear those gremlins in your mind that tell you that you can’t do this. That you don’t measure up. That you’re failing. That you’re not worthy to be the mother to your kiddos. That your voice isn’t as valuable as someone else’s. That you are alone in your struggles.

ALL lies, my friend. All lies. And the sooner you learn to replace each one with the truth, the sooner you’ll live more freely, as the woman and mother that God created you to be. And that’s why I created the What’s True About You Journal. It’s an amazing tool that will help you replace those lies with the truth. The current ones are blank inside and I’m working on another version (alongside ridiculously talented artist and friend Ami, and Jen, amazingly supportive editor and dearest friend) is going to be so much more. The new journal will include beautiful artwork displaying truths about who we are and who God is. It will be for all women and will share stories of truths and lies from teens through empty-nesters that will inspire you. It will be so overwhelmingly beautiful as we fill the pages with our fears, worries, and lies and then replace them with hope, peace, and truth. I cannot wait to share this with you. Get on my email list if you want to know the moment they release!

So Dear Abby, you’ve got this girl. You are an amazing mother. You are not alone. You are fully equipped to mother two babies, two personalities, two futures. Thanks for being part of the Mother of the Year Facebook group. It’s vulnerability like yours that makes this group who we are.

If you’ve got advice for Abby, leave it below!

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Lisa GraftComment