A few weeks ago I called my husband in tears.
“I’m losing at life,” I confessed to him, going through my laundry list of personal, parenting, and career failures. That morning my kids had gotten into an epic argument over sliced ham at the grocery store, culminating with my 3-year-old son managing to get himself stuck in the fire truck shopping cart, screaming and crying like he had a broken a limb. I was behind on a variety of work deadlines, as juggling a potty-training, nap-refusing toddler and a teething, crawling 9-month-old had sucked up all my free time, and I hadn’t managed to make it to see my ailing, elderly father at the hospital in a few days. And despite my efforts to keep our house neat and organized, there were clothes that needed to be folded, dishes in the sink, and toys all over the place. This season of life, it was hard, and no matter how desperately I tried to be the best version of myself, I was falling short to say the least.
I was expecting him to give me some advice on how to manage my time better, or just make a snarky comment like, “well, you wanted to be a stay-at-home mom,” but he didn’t.
“Stop,” he told me. “You are doing a great job. You are the one that keeps this family together.”
He continued to point out all the ways I was winning – the fact that our children were beautiful, happy, and creative little souls that smiled at strangers and said things like “please” and “thank you” and “nice to meet you,” career achievements reached while raising them without more help than a high school babysitter a few hours a week, how I had successfully managed my father’s healthcare since he suffered a stroke several months back, and how I was a great wife and partner. He reminded me that a bad day, is just a bad day.
As stay-at-home parents it can often be difficult to realize our worth, as there are no raises, progress reports, or gold stars put next to our names on the wall. We can read essays, get support from other friends or people in online groups, but for whatever reason, it is usually our partner’s validation that packs the most punch.
A Facebook post written by Australian husband and father, Scott Douglas, in honor of his wife of eight years has gone viral this week after being shared by blogger Constance Hall, and it truly warmed my heart. In it, he says exactly what every, single stay-at-home parent wants to hear from their partner – that we are appreciated.
“After a hard day at work there is nothing better than clocking off. Some days I get home and see my beautiful wife worn out, tired, frustrated and overwhelmed by the challenges of being a mum,” the 30-year-old production supervisor wrote.
“Unlike me she has no set hour to clock off or rewarded with overtime or bonuses for all the extra work and effort she has put in during the day. She doesn’t accumulate sick leave, Annual leave or long service, no weekly super or weekend, no looking forward to a public holiday to shorten her week.
On the 3.5.11 she clocked onto being a mum, on the 6.8.14 she started her overtime shift. 2 boys, 2 boys that never stop, that challenge every aspect of being a mother, she has never asked for a pay raise or looked for another job. So even though today was hard and you feel unappreciated or unsure if you made a difference in their lives this is how your day really went.
Your sons woke from their nice warm beds that have been lovingly washed and made by you. They ate breakfast that was organized a week ago when you wrote out the shopping list. You packed a lunch box for one to go to daycare … whilst balancing another on your leg, arm, shoulders.”
He continued to praise his wife, who runs a business from her home in addition to taking care of her children, going through the list of amazing ways she contributed to her family and all of the self-sacrifices she made for them.
“So when you see a bad day, I see an amazing women who never calls in sick, never quits, never turns her back on the hard days and who has the power to go to bed knowing it will happen all again tomorrow. You are an amazing and fabulous mother. Even though it doesn’t seem like it, you are the greatest thing in these boys lives and we love you, for everything you do.”
Scott explains to Babble that he was inspired to write the ode to Kate, 30, after she had called and texted him throughout the day needing to discuss her day. Her sons had terrorized her, smearing yogurt on walls, spilling water on the carpet, dumping paint into the fish tank, having multiple meltdowns in the car, and being rowdy at the doctor’s office. He felt like she needed support — not just from him — but from other mothers dealing with the same everyday struggles, so he shared it on social media.
“I really wrote it to see other mothers reply and tell her they have similar days and she hasn’t failed but is doing an amazing job, also to let her know that I understand how hard her role is as a mother and that I appreciate her everyday and she should never feel like she has failed as a mum and even the everyday things mums do are important to their children, not just the perfect photo taken of the perfect time that is placed on Facebook by others,” he explained.
Despite how difficult it can be staying home with children, Kate wouldn’t trade it for the world.
“Most days are great but, my goodness, there are some hard ones thrown in there too!” Kate tells us.
“I get a million cuddles everyday even if that comes with a big snotty kiss, I get to watch their bond grow stronger everyday, I get to see there face light up when daddy gets home from work, I get to do day care drop off and pick up and hear about their day from their teachers, I get to run my business with the hours I want, I get the random I love you’s and I get that beautiful connection that grows stronger every day.”
One thing is for sure! Scott has definitely raised the bar high for all the husbands out there, whose wives are most likely sharing his viral post with them.
And for all the single ladies out there who are asking: no, he does not have any brothers!