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The woman you accuse of not having an equally exhausting day because she didn’t go to work all day – the woman you just bypassed when you got home and made yourself a sandwich meanwhile she hadn’t had a meal all day. The woman you didn’t bother to ask how her day was because it all sounds redundant to you, yet she never fails to ask how yours was. The woman you dictate how to raise her kids because your experience and age trumps her knowledge and instincts. The woman who made a hot fresh meal she was so proud of – mostly because she was able to cook the entire thing before the baby woke up – she didn’t even get to taste it and perfect it before your loose tongue criticized it. The woman who spent all day cleaning and doing errands just to get through one small space and the laundry, as you walk in and throw your clothes around. The woman who had multiple nervous breakdowns trying to breastfeed her crying newborn with shaking, tired hands and reasonable doubt that she wasn’t doing it right, yet remained resilient in giving it a fair shot. The woman who feels too much of a burden to ever ask for help so she begins what will become incomplete tasks. She’s the kind hearted, generous woman who won’t say a word, who won’t reprimand you or start a fight. She’ll just clear the plates or pick up the misplaced shorts. She’s the woman who won’t question if you can help her just a little so she can get some things done in the house. She’ll live with the built up mail scattered on the coffee table and she’ll handle the unpaid bills out of clear forgetfulness, because pregnancy brain gets worse after labor. She’s the woman who won’t complain, she’ll just absorb your bad behavior and negative energy, and go on doing what needs to be done to provide for her family, to raise her children, to create the life she envisioned. She’s the woman who will look passed your lack of empathy and appreciation and still do something thoughtful for you in those five minutes she gets to herself. She’s the woman who teared up in her baby’s screams and loses her mind after the twentieth time the baby spits out the pacifier but cries for its return, but then that baby smiles and it completely washes away the silly stress that her wound up just five minutes ago. While the clothes are always clean, the food is always cooked, the floors are always mopped: the house is never tidy, the clutter is always existent, and the coffee is always brewing. God bless the mess this woman creates trying to get her child and herself out of the house. God bless the daily repetitive routine she’s clocked into her brain to remember it all. God bless the superpowers in her tiny hands and enormous heart to keep going, to keep growing. She may not be out there working for some large corporation or out there saving the world but in these four walls, she’s sure as hell changing it. She’s raising a child who will grow with strong morals and values, she’s teaching her children of love and respect, of hard work and kindness. She’s raising the next generation of imaginative thinkers, logical researchers, kind humanitarians, hard workers, strong athletes, brave soldiers. She’s molding a world of possibilities and opportunity, not with two hands and some clay but with two hands and her heart.

Maybe we all need that reminder sometimes.

Thank you to all the moms out there. It’s not always easy and 9 out of 10 times we’re all just winging it- a part of this trial and error method to see what works for us and our kids. 9 out of 10 times moms are invisible in their struggle because “we’ve all done it,” is easier to say than to take a moment to step out of our own shoes and into someone else’s and just listen for a moment. 9 out of 10 times moms are overlooked and under appreciated, mostly unintentionally but still affected by this bringing us down. So from one mom to another, I see you. Thank you for being a superhero.

-Allison Ryder