What's in a name: Making Me Too
I remember several defining moments as I ventured through my first pregnancy and early motherhood where I felt absolutely alone. Whether through a judgmental glare from an old lady at the grocery store, the cold shoulder from those at church, or the gossiping whispers from my young peers, it was quite evident that being a teenage mother would forever make me different. When I was attempting to still keep ties with my friends my own age, no one could relate to the back aches and heartburn of pregnancy or later sympathize with my complete exhaustion from having sleepless nights with a newborn. I attended get togethers when I could but always felt like a fish out of water the entire time.
As my daughter grew up (which was a tricky thing no one warned me would happen to my adorable little baby😉) and I then became a mom of two once my bouncing baby boy was born, I found myself full fledged in "the mom crowd". I was well-versed in motherhood and attended weekly play dates and story times. Still, small comments like "oh you're just a baby with babies" or "you wouldn't understand ______ (fill in the blank), you're still so young" proved to me what I already suspected, I didn't fit in here either.
I vividly remember having no one to speak to at my daughter's Kindergarten orientation as all the other moms spoke to my mom (Sienna's grandma) instead referencing to her as "the mom". Sure, it's understandable and a simple mistake since my mom is a young grandma and looks even younger than she is anyway, but all these interactions grew the echoing voice in my head that continuously shouted, "you don't fit in" "no one is like you" "you are alone”.
This dialogue kept replaying to me through the days that felt lonely as a stay at home mom completing the overwhelming task of just raising kiddos (3 now, because I went back for more!) Days were happy and joyful, of course, but somehow at the end of the day when my head hit the pillow the overall feeling was that I was not enough or didn't do things well or struggled too much with everyday life. It felt so isolating as if I were the only woman experiencing this.
I began sharing through my favorite thing ever (words!!) about the "reality" of every day. Sure motherhood and being a wife and woman in general was a huge blessing full of smiles... but it was also filled with tears, and period cramps, and dishwashers left open for you to hit your shin on by the "man of your dreams" that drive you friggin' nuts. I felt better after getting it all out and a funny thing began to happen. One by one, others said "me too!" I got notes thanking me for being real and raw and vulnerable to share what I was going through because they were going through that too! It was very clear to me that whether you were a teenage mom or an older mom, a girl in college, or a grandmother... we all had moments that felt like we were the only ones.
As I recognized the power of a "me too" in my own heart I began to try to give one away whenever I could. Mom in target with a screaming and crying kid who won't sit down in the cart. "I see you sister. Stick that cake pop in his mouth so you can enjoy your chai tea and search the clearance. No judgement here. ✊🏼Me too." Woman crossing her arms walking into church so your husband can't reach over and grab your hand to save face after you just argued the whole drive there? "Ugh. The nerve, right? Man of my dreams, my a...😳. Me too!" Lady who just got prescribed anxiety medication because you literally had an EKG done to confirm that you aren't in fact having a heart attack daily. "Oh, just calm down? Why didn't I think of that! Thankyouverymuch.😑 Me too!”
I slowly rewrote the dialogue I had heard in my mind over and over again. I am not alone. I am not the only one going through this. We are all enduring life together in all its messy and beautiful glory. When I heard those truths and began to heal those hurts within my own self, a calling landed on my heart. I was going to be a "me too" giver to others by sharing my own journey.
Luckily I don't have to know any answers to gift these "me too" moments. So if you're looking for that, you're in the wrong place. I mean I once answered a question during a marriage interview at my church on stage in front of the entire congregation and very confidently said, "I would take my husband on a date to another country... like Africa." 😳😂 I rest my case. So what I share here now is just the "making of me". The happenings of my life... no rhyme or reason. That may be a cute outfit, a good recipe (haha! A girl can dream right?!) or a deep revelation from God. It’ll be light hearted and sometimes serious, pretty and sometimes not. Nonetheless, I plan to share my journey of everyday in hopes that you'll experience a "me too" moment and see the hope I've found in not doing this alone.