hug a mom

mom and me

|  Me and my adorable mom. How lucky am I to have those genes?  |

A dear friend of mine, who also happens to be a new mom, is having A Week. By which I mean, a week that would make me – any normal human, really – just curl up into a ball and give in to your darkest thoughts.

Luckily, this friend of mine is not a normal human – she’s a superhero. I’ve known this for some time, but the simple fact that she has not completely lost her mind this week, or resorted to sticking a bendy straw directly into a bottle of tequila seals the deal. I’ve been doing my level best to pitch in and be a friend, but let me say this: I spent a handful of days this week walking in her shoes, cuddling her adorable newborn munchkin for a handful of caffeinated, showered, daylight hours, and all I know is that I adore the heck out of that baby, but if somebody doesn’t put me on a plane to Bora-Bora, and I mean immediately, I’m not sure I’ll last the week.

Watching my friend bring it in such a profoundly impressive way has left me thinking about my own superhero of a mom, who did all of it with one more kid to juggle and one less co-parent to lean on. Who worked three jobs to pay our rent, who didn’t own a new car until I was in high school, and who went without more often than I’ll probably ever know. Oh, and put herself through college and law school while she was at it. I think she knows by now that I’m in awe of all that – I talk her up all the time, to everyone – but I’m pretty sure she also knows that because I am a contentedly kidless person, I have no fucking clue how hard it actually was for her. I can’t begin to know.

I texted my mom earlier this week and commented that babies were harder than they look. “I remember,” she said. Sometimes I think about having kids just so that she could be a grandmother. She’s earned it.

All this rambling to say: hug a mom this weekend. It doesn’t have to be yours – I know things are complicated. Mine happens to be utterly amazing, but it’s not always so. There are issues and heartbreaks and regrets and distances we can’t always cross. Life is messy. But I promise you, this weekend you’ll see a mom out there in the world who needs an encouraging smile and a reminder that she’s doing it right, because she’s clinging to her grip on sanity with two very tired, very sticky fingers. When you spot her, hold the door open. Pay for her coffee, bite your tongue when her toddler pitches a fit, or leave her a note telling her she’s a superhero. Just take a moment and acknowledge that, my God, she is doing the hardest job I know. And she’s doing it for free. No vacation days, no time-outs, just for the sake of that little bundle of milk and poop she’s stewarding through the world, one spit-up-covered day at a time.

{PS: While you’re at it, you might keep your eyes open for a non-mom who could use a hug too. This Mother’s Day business is tough for a lot of people, for a lot of reasons, and a little bit of kindness goes a long, long way.}


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9 comments on “hug a mom

  1. Kendra

    What a heartfelt and beautiful piece! And what a wonderful pic of you and your mom.

  2. Jessie

    becki, that was so sweet! Now your very hormonal friend is very teary eyed 🙂 xoxo

  3. D

    Okay, who cut all the onions?!?! Becki, thank you so much for this post – I have read it 4 times already. It comes so timely at the end of a rough week (particularly at work) and I so appreciate it – it allows me to take a step back and take a deep breath and give myself a bit of grace One day at a time. Thank you – the world is better because of your beautiful writing. Your mother is lucky to have a daughter like you!

  4. Allison

    Some great thoughts here. I am a lucky mom of two, but it would be a whole lot harder without a village of grandmothers, aunts, neighbors, friends, teachers and community leaders. I want to give a special shout out to my sister, who does not have children of her own, but who takes time to spend one-on-one time with each of her nieces and nephews on a regular basis. All women deserve to celebrate their influence on the next generation on Mother’s Day.

  5. Mom

    I am so lucky to have such an amazing daughter, and I am so very proud to be her mother. She is incredible in every way and brings me tears of joy which everyone who knows me knows is not easy to do.

    Love mom

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