Emails From Mom

(This was sent to me by my mom after a day where she received more than a few panicky texts in the vein of “OMFG will she ever stop crying I feel so horrible she looks so uncomfortable I haven’t slept in forever Adam says I smell like pee”.

I cant tell you how much her words help me- Everyone should have a mom like this.)
(P.S. Her nickname for me is Mouse)

“Oh Mouse, I hear you – and I remember so clearly those days when nothing I did worked and not only did I feel like a failure as a mother but I didn’t really want to do it anymore – I wanted to be accomplishing and accomplished and at least get my hair brushed, for god’s sake.

Logic demands that, if you do A, B happens. But with kids, your only obligation is to do A (take care of the baby) and all the other alphabet letters have to wait their turn. In times like the 3 week screamies (and if you don’t think they exist, look at the comments on my facebook post – ALL mothers know about them) anyway, in times like the 3 week screamies, you do whatever you have to do that works to make your baby happy.

If the only way she will sleep is on top of you, then you lie there – all day – and she is safe. it sucks and it totally negates you as YOU and you feel like an incompetent teary ass but that’s who you have to be that day – those days – you have to be her mom – and you have to help her because she can’t help herself – and it doesn’t end with the screamies – it happens with their tantrums when their mind is moving faster than their mouths or bodies – when they are super frustrated – or feeling super sick – or just angry – and you have to be there and be the mom – because you are the mom.

And someday, when they are exhausted and frustrated at ? because they can’t get their baby to shut up, you will be the mom – still. It never ends. And most of the time, you don’t want it to end but on days like today, it’s normal – it’s okay -that’s what husbands should be for – to be the dads when you have had it being the mom.

I hope this is comforting – you’re allowed to not know all the answers – no one does. You just do what you can to the best of your abilities and if that doesn’t work, you hand off to Adam and you have a good cry and swear a bit and, tomorrow, she will look at you with those gorgeous pouty lips and perhaps smile and your heart will melt and you will forgive her and yourself.

So there….

I love you


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  • Reply Niamh Osborne February 12, 2014 at 10:50 PM

    Love!!!!!!!!! Bookmarked to read when I (if I’m ever brave enough) have baby number two.

  • Reply Louise February 13, 2014 at 12:01 AM

    My mum brought us up pretty much single-handed after my parents divorced and we moved to the north of England to be near her family. She is still my constant rock now I am Mum, thinks of ways to help me before I even know I need it, and I cannot contemplate how I would have done this, twice, without her x

  • Reply Deborah Calderon February 13, 2014 at 9:47 AM


  • Reply HannahMay March 16, 2014 at 8:34 AM

    I’m in the middle of the three week screamies with my first. Reading this made me sob — thank you to your mom for saying just what needed to be heard.

    • Reply sweetmadeleine March 16, 2014 at 10:16 AM

      Oh, Hannah! It can be so overwhelming, hey? Please know that it gets so, SO much better though. Just cry and eat and hibernate like a slug until it passes 🙂


  • Reply Black Helicopters - Sweet Madeleine June 23, 2015 at 11:42 PM

    […] idea of preparing vs. protecting comes straight from my mom. She is a very wise woman (remember this email?), and undoubtedly one of the best moms I know. And when I was crawling through the worst of things […]

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