Hello friends it's shannon being late to post again sorry yall I have less brain and energy than normal and these factors severly complicate how much I am able to accomplish in a day. :) but I am attempting to keep up with our blog because it means a lot to share with all of you and encourage each other as women and mamas!
So with that here are a few of the latest happenings in our house. We are still trying to prepare our house and family schedule for the addition of Baby M. I dont know about any of you but somedays it feels like a ran a triathlon after simply throwing in a load of laundry... ah the joys of pregnancy eh? So with even the smallest task feeling like a daunting nightmare of a chore and wrangling two rowdy boys life has certainly been exciting and exhausting) lately! I sit here and wonder how will I ever survive with three boys in the house?!? But then I am reminded of my most favorite scripture Philippians 4:13 I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me ... including holding down the fort while hubbers is in the field while carrying a wiggly rascal in my giant preggo belly and toddler wranglin at the same time! Yes I can! :)
I think we all too often are our own worst critics and I am far too gulity of this myself. How many times in a day do I apologize to guests in my home for the mess that is my living room?! Or for the lack of a walking path as toys and who knows what else occupies what im pretty sure used to be my floor.... (Ask anyone who knows me) now my house is no future episode on hoarders (my closet is another story entirely but hey if I can still close the doors for now it works for me) but the point is I am not perfect nor is anyone else and guess what? That is OK! I had a delightful phone chat with Ashley this morning (besties are such a lifesaver when you are feeling like a total failure!!) And we were talking frankly and honestly about our frustrations and our recent lack of energy due to this that or the other.
First of all friends, let me assure you I am most definitely NOT the perfect housewife that has it all together! But let's be honest no one is... and those that pretend to have it all together are typically the most miserable ... you reading this right now be honest with yourself do you REALLY have all your laundry done? (I know that is a no because all the laundry only stays "done" until you take off what you are wearing and unless yall are walkin around in the buff no judging haha but unless you and your family dont wear clothes you will always have laundry) do you have projects that you have been putting off like organizing that closet or going through the kiddos clothes?? Of course we all do we all have unfinished projects and we all have personal struggles where our individual frustrations and weaknesses show through but instead of being honest and letting people know we have imperfections and cracks (which hello we all do) we would rather slap on more makeup, another coat of "varnish" to help us look together and project this image of who we wish we were and not who we are... why?!? Why is it not ok to be real anymore why are we so afraid to go out without makeup on our tired eyes or show up somewhere in what we really wear all day (yikes) well while Ashley and I were chatting we stumbled upon the real reason why women pretend to be a certain soccer mom image that society presses down on us all. One word... Criticism! Whether it is self criticism or from an outside source criticism is hurting all of us in some form or another!
We live in the age of pinterest and social networking and celebrity moms that are back to a size 3 a few weeks after they give birth! Yeah right!! And dont get me wrong Pinterest is a fantastic resource for recipes and creative projects and organizing classes 101 through 997 BUT sometimes as we are happily pinning away we dont realize that sometimes we are actually pining too, pining for the organized closets, and pining to make those homemade skirts, pining after that freezer stocked to the brim with deliciously perfect premade meals, and pining after the butt and abs we really want.... and in so doing we are actually telling ourselves through each pin with a constant nagging inner voice that we arent good enough... see her house it's spotless why cant you be like that Shann? See how organized her children are you really must be doing something wrong! Why cant I find time to DIY my life?! Why cant you get it together why why?? why cant you look like her why cant you french braid or clean house on a schedule like Suzy Homemaker why why WHY AREN'T YOU GOOD ENOUGH?!!?
Did that strike a chord did one of you jist gasp out loud like I did when I started asking myself those questions? It is amazing how if we really think about it for just a second we realize how we make ourselves feel like junk playing the seemingly harmlesspin my comparison or better phrase that I personally have used on pinterest boards ... my dream fill in the blank which made me stop and think am I really so unhappy where I am that I have this other "dream life" picked out?? Please dont think im judging fellow pinterest addicts because lets face it who doesnt want a perfectly organized home but my point is we are pinning and pining our lives away and often times forgetting to count the blessings we do have and realizing that we do have pretty wonderful lives right where we are even with our messy closets, fussy toddlers, and our less than perfect figures!
And I'm telling you when you start listening to that negative inner voice that points out all your flaws and cracks and your struggles you can bet that someone in your life be it a friend, family member, or even a grouchy stranger that is just havin a bad day will sadly be all too willing to point it out too further "proving" to us how imperfect and not good enough we are! Whether it is our struggle with midnight brownies giving us our bountiful hips or our daily battles to finish "simple" chores, our sassy toddlers that have meltdowns in the most inconvenient situations, or our lack of organizing skills! We hear it enough times and sadly we start listening to the nagging voices that convince us we dont know what we are doing as mamas or we arent good enough wives or we just are miserable housekeepers or in general ugly less than par women and sadly in the world we live in it is even easier to spread these lies and hateful mean shattering thoughts...
While facebook is wonderful for keeping in touch with family and friends and sharing those adorable pics of our littles it is also much easier to make rude comments and make people and specifically women and moms more self concious than we already are... why is it easier to make a rude comment or say something critical to a first time mama who asks an innocent question about when to wean her baby, or how to settle a screaming toddler, or something as simple as how to get a grease stain out of a white t shirt?? Why is it more common to read mean spirited comments about how "you should just know" or "wow you really are clueless aren't you" .... Mean! Uncalled for! And sadly becoming such a popular trend that these women are getting so hurt they become dangerously depressed... Obviously if someone asks a question to some degree they feel uncertain and "don't know" why else would they be asking the question guys???? For goodness sake we are all human beings that DONT have all the answers and constantly make mistakes stop being so cotton picket mean to each other but more importantly STOP this senseless mom on mom bullying it's not helping anyone to tear others to pieces on facebook or twitter or what-have-you so quit! Don't like someones status just to make a hurtful comment stop hate tweeting people that used to be in your life be a grown up and move on with your life right? And sadly... Maybe you are the one being bullied reading this post right now just take a breath and read this...
YOU are beautiful!! YOU ARE GOOD ENOUGH because you are YOU!! YOU offer your family and friends love and humor and joy that is uniquely yours! God made you the way you are and He doesn't make mistakes! If you feel beaten down and criticized to the brink of tears right now just literally count your blessings count the moments that you smiled with your kiddos, or the moments that you just felt a bit of joy, celebrate your accomplishments especially the "small" ones and literally out loud, right now, tell yourself you are pretty! Because you are even when you have bags under those beautiful eyes even when your hair is unwashed and near accidental dreadlock status (guilty) even when you are wearing pjs or sweats and just feel like a train wreck you are pretty because you are you and its your inner pretty that will always shine through when you arent wearing the latest fashion or when you have NO makeup on whatsoever! You are beautiful and wonderful and new mama struggling through late nights and teething you are doing a great job! You are loving your child through a tough stage and as long as you are leading with love you are doing your best! To you mother of multiples you are amazing and if your house is messy but your children know they are loved than you are a great mama! Newlywed wife it really is ok to burn the toast or completely forget the clothes in the washer now and again trust me it wont be the last time ;) dear sweet young lady if you are single and being made fun of for still having your virginity YOU are truly a rare treasure in this world and the man God has for you is incredible and worth waiting for, just as you are!! To you brave woman reading this just struggling right now and hurting, not feeling good enough you are simply wondeful who you are! Honeys we all make mistakes and nobody is perfect so give yourself permission to be real I am going to challenge y'all and myself today... take a real picture of you what you actually look like today and post it as your profile picture and then go genuinely compliment comment at least 3 people in your life! Ladies we all need encouragement and we all have flaws but we are all uniquely beautiful and have REAL pretty personalities that bring joy to our loved ones and ourselves if we allow ourselves the liberty and freedom to just be us!
Maybe today instead of pinning away our afternoons we can count our actual blessings instead! I know this is a hard challenge and its never easy to be completely open and honest because we risk rejection but ladies there are enough fake women in this world be real be unique be you! Know that everyone struggles and hurts but we dont have to do it on our own we can hold each other up when we see a Sister fall or maybe we can just listen as she pours her heart out over the phone be a real friend and please everyone please please remember what our mamas taught us truly if you can't think of anything nice to say just dont say anything at all or better yet be the good that you really want to see in the world and be the positive one that says something genuinely nice in a sea of negative comments! To all of you gorgeous gals I think you rock! I believe you are amazing being the uniquely beautiful you God made you!! Carry on ladies hold your head up high because though you dont have it all together you really have it all :) and smile pretty girl because your smile is sometimes an unspoken hug and encouragement to a stranger that is also struggling!
I love each and every one of you and when I think of all of you beautiful readers I just wish I could give each of you a great big hug and say soldier on ladies life is precious and fleeting and
much to wonderful to waste time miserably pretending to be perfect... you are the best YOU in this world because there isnt another you out there :) so keep it up Sisters you are beautiful and you dont hear it enough but you are doing a good job! Be a blessing today and encourage a Sister and don't worry about chasing the "dream" instead count your real blessings and just be blessed.
Enjoy your life today and just be you, sweet ladies! hugely huge hugs and just being real polkadot love from my messy imperfect house to yours .... Shannon :)