I sit on the floor at my playgroup and spill to the other moms that I’m 4 weeks pregnant. A chorus of congratulations goes up, and we start to chat about second pregnancies.
I’ve already started to feel incredibly sick each day, and worry about having hyperemesis gravidarum yet again. With Bella it was so crippling I had to quit my teaching job and deal with being sick every day till she was born, and I’m hoping it’s not as bad this time around. After all, what will I do? How will I manage with a husband who works 12-14 hours a day and a toddler at home in a town where we know almost no one and have no family?
But I keep silent as they talk about how they managed. I figure I’ll deal with it when the time comes.
One of the moms tells us she gets up at 4am now to hit the gym. Everything on her is perfect. Her kids are impeccably dressed. I’m jealous all the way around at how put together she looks, even with a toddler and a 6 month old. I was barely able to shower today and clean the house enough to have them all over. It’s only going to get worse.
Suddenly she chimes in, “When I was pregnant with my second, I did everything with my daughter I swore I’d never do. TV, microwave meals, days and days where we never left the house. She learned all the characters names on the shows I didn’t want her to watch. Ate like crap. My house was a mess most of the time until I got well. But we made it through.” She smiles at me encouragingly.
I’ve never forgotten that, 3 months later. Her words rung in my head on days I was so sick I could barely move. When I broke all my “rules” and simply did the bare minimum to get through the day with 3 meals and a safe toddler. Because someone who I thought had it all together was brave enough to admit it was rough for her too. I was able to let go of the guilt a little. Weeks on end, I clung to the words of other people who would tell me, “Us too, and we made it.”
This is how blogging can be. Friendships. Life. This is how they are supposed to be. We are there to be real with each other, to admit we don’t have it all together. There are times where bragging on a great day, or weeks, is part of that. Life doesn’t always suck. But sometimes it’s simply us being honest that sends the biggest impact. As hard as it is to do. I know, there are many times I keep the real bottled for fear of the repercussions.
It makes us vulnerable to people who want to critique and judge and keep up their own front of perfection.
You have no idea who you might impact with your story. The choice you made to lay it out there and say, “Hey, this is hard. I did it too, but we made it.” There isn’t anything wrong with doing your best, striving to have a better life, or sharing the good times. But when it’s all you present, you miss the chance to help someone else. Your honesty may make someone else’s struggle a little easier to bear.
Diana blogs on more on the crazy that is her life on the aptly named blog Hormonal Imbalances.
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