What Every Weary Mom Needs to Know

The youngest of my four children is almost five years old, and I feel as if I am finally able to breathe (a little). However, I do remember those days of exhaustion – those sleepless nights which made it a struggle just to get through the day… especially when the days included battles with strong-willed children. Like when I walked into the kitchen to find my oldest daughter carefully pouring a thin stream of lemonade. In an artful line.  Around the ENTIRE. PERIMETER. of the kitchen FLOOR. Or when this same child would stand at the point where the hardwood floor and the carpet met, one foot in the kitchen and the other in the dining room (where food was forbidden), holding a glass of juice over the carpet, pushing herself (and me!) to the very edge of insanity. Yes… moments such as these blurred into the next and into the next… and suddenly days and weeks had passed in a hazy fog. Needless to say, I was definitely a physically weary mom.  Adding to the fatigue was the emotionally taxing devastation of pregnancies followed by miscarriages… five times!

So let me be the first to admit that total and complete exhaustion – both of the physical and emotional variety – makes me grumpy, makes me act out, and makes me withdraw.   How about you? Here are a few bits of wisdom… things I wish someone would have shared with me during those demanding days…

Things every weary mom needs to know:

Steal moments with God. I say steal, because we all know that with small children running around, you will literally have to snatch moments when you can get them! Keep your Bible on the kitchen counter to read a passage as you prepare dinner; get up before your children to pray; read scripture out loud to your kids at meal time; post scripture on the bathroom mirror or on the laundry room wall.  Whenever possible, get into the Bible and talk to God.
Lean into the work. Mothering is hard work. Period. Why do we fight that?  Instead, we must lean into the labor, understanding that shaping hearts demands diligence and persistence, care and attention.  There is nothing easy about it. Welcome the calling, expect it to be challenging and enjoy the journey.
Find an encouraging friend. Share this time in community with another mom or two who can lend support and cheer, and even inspiration and example.  It will double your joy and divide your pain.
Embrace the motherhood mission. In her book aptly titled The Mission of Motherhood, Sally Clarkson says, “Saying yes to the mission of motherhood has certainly not meant giving up my ministry.  To a great extent, it is my ministry!” When we see our very own children in our very own homes as our very own special ministry from God, amazing growth takes place… in our children and in us.
Friends, God picked you to shepherd your precious children, and that gives you great responsibility and deep purpose. My prayer is that – on those especially draining days – these few suggestions might help you be a little less grumpy, a little less apt to act out, a little less prone to withdraw. I created this printable below as a reminder for you (and me)!
Hang in there, Mama. You can do this!
What Every Weary Mom Needs to Know
Blessings, Ruth Schwenk
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Comments

  1. Su Ann says

    I’m writing again. You say find a friend. For some of us it’s not that easy. I’ve been praying for a friend and am waiting patiently. I see/hear the benefits of a trusted friend and am believing for that for myself. Please pray for me! Thank you for these posts.

    • Stephi Sue says

      I am in the same boat as yourself, Su Ann, as a pastor’s wife I often get lonely and yearn for sweet fellowship. When I am most discouraged I am reminded of the sweet hymn..”I must tell Jesus…I cannot bear these burdens alone. In my distress he kindly will help me…”The Lord truly cares and hears your earnest plea.

      • Ministers wife says

        I am a ministers wife and it brings an extra living in a fishbowl challenge. With everyone watching and questioning and putting motives you don’t have behind your moves. It’s tough finding a friend you can trust.

    • Kate says

      Su Ann, you’re post almost brought me to tears! I am 35 years old and I too have longed for a friend who I can share my thoughts, my troubles and my frustrations with. unfortunately I’ve had my fingers burned several times with so-called friends and I’m pretty much now at the point in my life when I don’t dare to get close to anyone through fear of getting hurt. Its a horrible feeling that I feel has simply evolved through my own pain. I don’t have an agenda for a friendship other than they be here for me as much as I am for them. I only became a Christian 3 years ago and forgiveness is something I’m dealing with. I’m not at peace with it yet because I have so many unanswered questions. I will pray for you Su Ann.

  2. Elissa Philgence says

    Hi Ruth

    Thanks for the reminder and for the list. As I was reading your post a song came to my mind. I love this song and sing it every time the struggles of life weights heavy on my heart. It is my prayer that this song will be a blessing to someone.

    What a friend we have in Jesus,
    all our sins and griefs to bear!
    What a privilege to carry
    everything to God in prayer!
    O what peace we often forfeit,
    O what needless pain we bear,
    all because we do not carry
    everything to God in prayer.

    2. Have we trials and temptations?
    Is there trouble anywhere?
    We should never be discouraged;
    take it to the Lord in prayer.
    Can we find a friend so faithful
    who will all our sorrows share?
    Jesus knows our every weakness;
    take it to the Lord in prayer.

    3. Are we weak and heavy laden,
    cumbered with a load of care?
    Precious Savior, still our refuge;
    take it to the Lord in prayer.
    Do thy friends despise, forsake thee?
    Take it to the Lord in prayer!
    In his arms he’ll take and shield thee;
    thou wilt find a solace there. (Joseph M. Scriven, 1820-1886)

    Peace.

  3. Amy says

    this post was such a blessing. I forget sometimes in the midst to lean on God. I get so wrapped up in the chaos. I am lucky s well as blessed. I do have that friend to lean on. When things get to crazy for me she sends one of her older children to help. Which is another blessing in itself. I thank God for you and your blog. It has been a joy. Its like having a long distance friend pop in on life from time to time.

  4. Katie says

    I
    know this site is directed at moms, but I someday hope to be one and EACH day
    currently am a stay-at-home sister (and mommy-helper!) to 5 homeschooled
    brothers and sisters (I’m the only current graduate—though not for long!!) so I
    read these posts and store up the information for the future!

    But WHOA. This post was one of the best I’ve read (and that is saying something, because the entire month of January was filled with gut-renching-real FANTABULOUS posts!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) and while it is 1,000% true for every weary mom out there (I need to read it to my mom and FWD it to a few moms at church!) it is VERY applicable to my current situation in life right now!!!

    “Lean into the work. Mothering is hard work. Period. Why do we fight that? Instead, we must lean into the labor, understanding that shaping hearts demands diligence and persistence, care and attention. There is nothing easy about it. Welcome the calling, expect it to be challenging and enjoy the journey.”

    WOW. Ouch. This statement is one of the very BEST pieces of advice I’ve heard/read concerning my current and future role as a woman. This can even perfectly apply to my role as a wife-and-mother-in-training RIGHT NOW… because being the oldest sibling and daughter in a house of 6 children, 5 of which are currently homeschooled!? Yikes. This is NOT. EASY. EITHER. And I know I could/need to ‘lean into it’ a. whole. lot. more.

    And also embracing the “motherhood mission”—I AM on a mission to prepare for the future… But NOT SO MUCH SO THAT I MISS THE HERE AND NOW OF MY BROTHERS AND
    SISTERS!!! God used this to help me see that I need to “embrace the Sisterhood Mission” to see that while, YES, preparing me for the ministry of motherhood, being a big sister and a submissive, supportive, ENCOURAGING, and HELPFUL and daughter IS MY MINISTRY NOW!! I’ve been “handpicked” by God to be a blessing to and have an influence on my sisters, baby brother, and even my very manly brother who’s about to graduate. THAT gives me great responsibility and purpose!
    Wow.

    I know this is
    a HUGE comment but this was SUCH an awesome ‘light bulb’ moment and encouraging
    post to me!!! THANK YOU!!!! (((Hugs)))

    (You mean to edify other
    wives and moms out there—and you DO!! J—but thank you for the fair amount of “Titus 2-ing” you do as well!!! )

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