For Mother’s Day, we wanted to share a story from Instagram’s @michelelovetri on coping with anxiety as a mother. Check out her story about sharing a vulnerable moment with her son.
“Mommy let’s take a picture, that will make you feel better,” he said as he crawled onto my lap as I was having an anxiety attack. He grabbed my phone, opened the camera from the lock screen, and snapped this photo. The world became too heavy, my thoughts clashed harder and faster than I could keep up with and I didn’t have time to run to a private room to clear the lump from my throat. I broke down. I sobbed, hard, and I was shaking. I woke up knowing it was coming, it was a feeling I could not ignore, knew all too well and never extended an invitation to. It’s an unwelcome guest that I continue to let in and no longer fight. It’s a part of who I am, these moments in time are a part of me now. Do I fear them? Yes I sure do. There is nothing enjoyable about anxiety and feeling out of control. As strong as I feel I am, and as resourceful as I feel I have become, the truth is that this can just plain suck and I think it’s normal to feel that way and I’m not ashamed to feel that way either.
I do my best to shield my kids from these moments, but at the same time seeing me being real, being human, and feeling in many ways shows them that it’s ok to have these moments and be in our emotions. That it’s ok to feel vulnerable and unsure of ourselves, but that we can push on, and we can keep going. They see strength, resilience, and the ability to be human and I believe these are so important for them to learn and will make them better people in the long run. I want them to be proud of me when they look back on their childhood and feel grateful to have a mom who never stopped trying. I think that’s important to remember. Never stop trying and giving yourself your best. We may trip up along the way, but I believe the effort is where the strength lies.
I share these moments because I believe in the good they can do. I do not want sympathy because I am strong as hell and can do this. I want education and understanding. I want others to know we are normal, freaking amazing parents, and not any less human than anyone else. I want less judgement and more love. I want those struggling to know they are not alone. Keep on keepin’ on.