We all need a decent mum mood booster once in a while, right?
We all need to be reminded that even in the trenches of parenthood, we are seen, we are heard, and we are so important. A pat on the back from a fellow mum – someone who truly gets it – to say “Hey. You’re bloody brilliant, lady.”
Mums are pretty talented at putting on a brave face and just getting it done, day after day. But you and I both know that we’re not always as tough as we look, are we? And a kind word, an empathetic smile, or a hot coffee thrust in our under-moisturised hands can be the ultimate mum mood booster; the difference between feeling loved or feeling isolated. Sadly, in a culture where women are kind of known more for tearing each other down than building each other up, the encouragement that we crave can be seriously hard to come by.
But here’s the thing: we all have the power to build each other up.
To look a fellow mum in the eye and speak kindly. To give her a wink and assure her “It’s okay… I feel this way too.”
We can look past the fact that we saw her wearing that exact same outfit yesterday, or that we overheard her screaming at her kids in Woolies, or that she’s almost always five minutes late for school pick-up. Instead, we can choose to remind her of her worth and the fantastic job she’s doing.
And the awesome perk of shelling out mood-boosting affirmations to your fellow mums?
You’ll probably catch a few back in return. (Plus it’s nice to be nice!)
8 Mum Mood-Boosting Truths We All Need to Hear
1. “The work you’re doing matters”
Logically, we know this, but sometimes we need a little reminder that the day-to-day slog of wiping up spilled milk, reading the same story 50 times, and cooking healthy weeknight dinners are little pieces of a much bigger picture. We’re raising humans, here. We may not be stretching our brains all the time or impressing our peers every day. But we are building a legacy. And that’s seriously impressive.
2. “Your kids are awesome”
If you notice her kiddo has impeccable manners, or stops what he’s doing to help out a younger peer, or clears his plate at dinner without being asked, don’t let the moment slip by. Look his mum in the eye and tell her, “Wow. What an awesome kiddo.” Complimenting someone’s kid is a sure-fire way to make her beam with pride.
3. “We’ve all been there”
Every mum has those head-in-the-sand moments where she just wishes she could wiggle her nose and teleport herself to a desert island. Whether it’s at the hands of a shrieking toddler thrust on the floor at Target, a pre-schooler who’s just vommed all over the floor in a restaurant, or a couple of siblings fighting to the death in front of all the other mums at the park, the result is the same: serious, painful, stomach-in-your-throat shame. But kids will be kids, despite their poor mum’s best efforts. So if you bear witness to another mum’s kiddo-induced shame, look her in the eye and assure her that it happens to the best of us.
4. “You deserve a little me-time”
And not only does she deserve it, but you’re going to make it happen for her! Whether that’s taking care of school pick-up one day, hosting her kids for a morning play date, or popping over to babysit for a couple of hours in the evening, you’ve got her covered. Send her off to get her hair done, or to read a book in a cafe, or to catch up with her sister who’s visiting from out of town. Release her from parenting just for a couple of hours, and you will change her whole week.
Hey, here’s a definite mum mood booster – suggest she take a mumcation. Just because!
5. “You’re a fabulous mum”
See also: “You’ve got this, lady”. Don’t let there be any room for doubt. She may not be a perfect mum (pretty sure there’s no such thing!), but she’s the perfect mum for her little family. She’s doing a great job, and you admire her for it. If that’s not a mum mood booster, I don’t know what is.
6. “You could probably use a little help”
If you’re not in serious struggle town at least once a week, are you even a mum? Look for the mums who are struggling with school commitments or strong-willed kids or teething babies… they are not okay! Extend a sincere offer of help, and don’t take no for an answer.
7. “It’s okay to admit if you’re feeling overwhelmed”
Because motherhood can be totally overwhelming, and we’re lying if we try to pretend otherwise. In a world of picture-perfect Instagram influencer mums, it can feel like overwhelmedness = failure. Pshhhht. Overwhelmedness is actually par for the course for mums, and it’s extremely affirming to remind a fellow mum of this fact. Listen to her struggles, agree wholeheartedly that this motherhood business ain’t for the weak of heart, and help her find the light at the end of the tunnel.
8. “You and me, we’re in this together”
Let her know she has you on her side. Assure her that you’re shoulder-to-shoulder with her in the trenches, not pointing, aiming and shooting at her from the other side. And there is no greater mum mood booster than the realisation that she’s not doing this alone.
There isn’t a mum in the world who wouldn’t take comfort from any of the above.
So find a mum, lift her up, and all day long you’ll have good luck. (Just kidding. But it’ll definitely feel pretty good.)
Oh, and if all else fails… wine helps, too.