A Love Letter to the "Hot Mess Mom"
Dear “Hot Mess” Mom,
I’m writing to you today to thank you for being you and to let you know that you are my favorite, you are absolutely my people, let’s be besties. Whether you haven’t showered in three days (or five...or seven), have no idea what’s for dinner tonight, CAN! NOT! seem to keep your house from looking like a cyclone hit it, have never once been on time for preschool drop-off, or haven’t worn anything but sweats in two years because nothing else fits- I think you are glorious.
And those of you for whom your “hot mess” feels a bit deeper, if you’re battling a mental or physical illness that makes you not want to get out of bed or get off the couch, wrestling with demons from your own childhood that have been dredged up by becoming a mom, harboring worry, resentment, and/or stress in your life or relationships that are eating away at you- you are glorious as well and I love you.
Because, my sisters, you are my people. You are the ones I want to sit in my own messy living room and drink coffee with and discuss the realness of life. You are my jam. I love your messes- OUR messes- because they make us perfect for one another. The knicks in our armor, the rips in the supermom capes, those are the places where we reach out and connect. They make us accessible to one another and give one another permission to come to connection just as we are.
See, when we’ve got it all together, when things are going as we wish they would, we can just kind of fly along on autopilot and not need each other. If I’ve got my meals flawlessly planned for the week, I don’t need to ask anyone else what’s for dinner. If my kid goes to bed without a fight every night, I don’t need to reach out to my sister-moms and ask for suggestions. I have no need to crack my façade of perfection to let anyone in behind it.
The struggle, the realness, the mess is where and why and how we truly find one another. My struggles cause me to reach out and yours cause you to reach back. If you’ve been where I’ve been, you can tell me how you got through it- or at least assure me that it can be gotten through. And even if we haven’t walked the same path, you at least know what it’s like to be in the middle of something that feels SO BIG and SO HARD that you can at least sit with me in those moments. When you are honest with me about not being perfect, you release me from feeling like I have to be perfect. Your realness invites me to bring mine, to come as I am- and oh, how I NEED that!
The struggles are also opportunities to figure out who is REALLY our people. How we react to one another in those toughest moments are how we figure out who are our sisterest of sister-moms. Folks who use one another’s struggles as opportunities to be smug and highlight their own awesomeness are so incredibly NOT my people- OUR people. We will know one another by the way our words hug, lift up, and encourage.
I want to celebrate you, my sisters. Let’s celebrate the ways we’ve got it all together, our talents and gifts that are uniquely our own and the ways we work HARD to pull our lives together. But let’s also celebrate the ways in which we are slightly cracked, barely holding on, and struggling because THOSE are our opportunities to connect with and cling to one another. You’re a hot, beautiful, glorious, perfect, delicious mess and I would have you no other way.
Sincerely and with all of my mess (I’d say “heart” but my mess is bigger),
PS If you want to bring your mess and come just as you are to a place where you can meet the like-hearted, come hang out with us in the Project Mother Facebook Group!