A Letter To Myself To Be Read On Bad Days

Dear Suzanne,

Hey. Hi There. How are you? Your hair looks nice like that. And you’ve definitely lost weight so don’t get discouraged, but also don’t forget to eat dessert sometimes because you’re kind of awful when you don’t get dessert.

In case you’re already wondering what this is about, it’s not the letter version of repeating affirmations to yourself in the mirror every morning (because I know you never remember to do that – it makes you feel silly). This is a letter to remind you of how awesome your life is on the days when you can’t do anything besides throw some crackers at the kids and hide in the bathroom until your husband comes home.

Today, Evan woke you up by climbing into bed and giving you hugs. Then he played on the iPad while you dozed and checked email and put off starting the day as long as possible.

That right there – the first 20 minutes of your whole day – should be more than enough to make you realize how lucky you are. Your son is healthy. He slept in his own room last night. He is able to climb. He is able to hug you. You have a bed. You have a room that is a pleasant temperature. You have an iPad. You have an iPhone. Your daughter slept in her own room. She is healthy. She is always excited to see you, even if you make her wait while you get dressed. You do not have to rush out the door for work. You can wake up at 7 am, and at 7:15 decide today is a beach day or a zoo day or a baking day or a library day or a stay-at-home day. Billions – literally, BILLIONS – wish they had a life like that.

Every single day for you is like a weekend for most people. You can shop or get coffee or work out or lie around doing nothing. Your bank account has money in it you did not have to earn but you get to spend. THINK ABOUT THAT. Yes, you are working in a zillion different ways at all hours of the day and night and yes your work as a wife and mother is important but in this country, at this time, that work is worth zero actual dollars. Too bad Target doesn’t accept blood, sweat, tears or poop. You have plenty of those.

Your biggest problem this week is that you double-booked your plans for Tuesday – you promised one friend you would meet her at the Seaport and another that you would be her event photographer at a party for your kids and all your kids’ friends. Oh noes! Your life is SO HARD, but only if by hard you mean “really really freaking awesome.”

Parenting a child is a challenge, and some days it’s a really challenging challenge and some days it feels like a challenge that will never ever end but always remember: IT WILL. Be glad the bad days end but remember the good ones do too. Today will end, tomorrow will end, your children’s youth will end. It will end and you will wonder why you didn’t enjoy more of it.

So go ahead, have a bad day. Feel sorry for your plight as an over-worked, over-stressed, under-appreciated mom. Count the minutes until you can pour a glass of wine or collapse into bed. Everyone’s allowed to have bad days. But when you wake up tomorrow with a snuggly ginger playing Angry Birds and a day of nothing but fun ahead of you, stop feeling bad and start appreciating how great your life is.


Past Suzanne

p.s. Don’t forget to eat the strawberry freezer jam. You tend to forget stuff you put in the downstairs fridge. Speaking of which, it’s probably time to throw out the egg nog.

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27 Responses to “A Letter To Myself To Be Read On Bad Days”

  1. Jessica says:

    What a great post, there are always tough days at a stay at home mom but there are plenty of days, when I’m still in my pajamas at noon and surrounded by my kids that I look around and realize how lucky I am to get to do what I do every day.

  2. Mama Durso says:

    Man, oh man, did every word on this post resonate with me. Yesterday, after I posted yet another status update about my children flat out refusing to sleep and a friend posted “Kelly Durso – birth control that’s 99.9% effective.” It was hilarious, but it really made me realize lopsided my complaining to bragging ratio is.

    I need to write myself a letter like this to help with my attitude. Good idea.

    And P.S.? You are definitely looking thinner!

  3. Am I seeing this correctly? Did you get a comment update? Will it email me when you (and only you) reply to me? That would be too awesome.

    I love the letter. You DO look significantly thinner. And you rock mom-ness like you have 5 kids.

    • bebehblog says:

      I HOPE the comments work like that – let me know if you get this and I’ll send my designer a box of cookies for finally fixing it.

      • So it still doesnt work like that. They just look prettier. I just realized this morning that I had asked that question with no reply so I went searching for which post that was on. WordPress is bad like that. You are one of 3 blogs I regularly read and have to remember to check back for replies. Most other blogs I dont care about replies or have auto notification of direct replies. I dont know what Jill is using on her WP blog but it works well. I also like Mandy’s disqus and my intense debate plug-in. Both are WP compatible.

  4. Animom says:

    Great post! I really turned the corner on my attitude this past Christmas when we lost our little niece, born full term but with a heart defect that went undetected. It has definitely made me a better parent. I owe it to her and her parents to be thankful that I have a healthy child.

  5. Sara says:

    I love this post! I generally find it easier to focus on all of the “bad” things about my stay at home mom life, and I don’t spend enough time remembering how blessed I truly am. I will save this letter to read to myself on the tough days! Thank you for putting my feelings into words, once again:)

  6. merin says:

    Dear Suzanne,

    You are AWESOME!! Thanks for this wonderful post.

    Love, Merin

    PS How do you get your hair to look like that-frizzy but in a really cool way?

    • bebehblog says:

      Bahaha, that was from my braids – I wore them as a headband in the morning and took them out in the afternoon. Instant crimps! Hello 1989!

  7. Celia says:

    I needed that, thanks!

  8. I love this post. I love the perspective. At the end of even a bad day, I try to remember that I am still really, really, really, fortunate to live my life.

  9. Sarah says:

    This is a great idea. I’m going to write one to myself, but perhaps because of all the swearing it will contain – I might not publish it. Heh.

  10. Katherine says:

    Suzanne – I really needed this letter today!!! I have been feeling very overwhelmed lately with a lot of exciting new responsibilities (of which you heard an earfull about this morning ;-)
    And I really needed to be reminded and re-grounded about what is REALLY important! Thank you SO much. I think I might have to write a letter like this to myself next week.

    PS – I’m sorry Tuesday caused a conflict for you, but I really appreciate you coming and taking beautiful pictures for me!!

  11. barbra says:

    I love this post. I need to write a similar letter to myself. I’ll put it in my notes on my iphone so it’s always with me. Even though I don’t stay at home and my kid has eating issues, I still have lots to be thankful for. My life is pretty great. I got a good dose of the greatness pill the last couple of days (after hitting the crappy pill for a few weeks) and this post inspired me to write it down so I remember how good things really are (even when it seems like it isn’t). And, it’s okay to have a pity party every now and then.

  12. Susan says:

    How do I pin this awesomeness that I ALSO need to read every once in a while? :) LOVE IT.

  13. Amy says:

    You forgot to compliment yourself on your shiny, shiny hair. It’s so pretty. I’m going to snip some in your sleep at BlogHer for my line of creepy Suzanne dolls.

    (The dolls are creepy. Not you.)

    • bebehblog says:

      I got a free bottle of this magical oil to review in a couple weeks and it is making my hair EXTRA shiny. I’ll bring it to BlogHer so you can use it instead of cutting off my hair, OK?

    • Miranda says:

      Her shiny hair is totally because I made her put honey on it!

      • bebehblog says:

        I need to write a post called “Four stupid things I put in my hair that actually did make it shinier”. I’m doing it.

  14. Laurie says:

    I loved reading this – I too, was feeling a bit “sorry for myself” today. Kinda silly now, looking back at how lucky I am! Great writing!!

  15. Miranda says:

    I need to write myself a letter like this. I need to remember that my life isn’t terrible, awful, no good, really bad. It’s actually pretty good most of the time.

  16. Kirsten says:

    So Brilliant. I love t’internet sometimes. I hate it a lot of the time (like when my boys – all three, the two I spawned and the one who helped me are seemingly controlled by it) but I am also struck by its power when I read something like your blog, written by someone thousands and thousands of miles away from where I am and yet which feel so familiar and appropriate.

    And how’s this for an ego boost to you… I am in my house right now. I’m in my house ALONE. There is no ONE, no THREE else here. It’s Saturday night. I have a bottle of wine, random non-meal but yummy things to eat and six different things to watch on tv all at the same time. This hasn’t happened for at least nine years. And I’m taking time out to read your blog and its making me smile.

    Thanks Suzanne, keep up the good work!

  17. Mama Fisch says:

    I just love this… working or not, sometimes I just need a kick in the pants to remind myself that yes I have bad days but the struggles are nothing compared to others and I just need to remember all that I have and be grateful.
    So my Cate cried all the way home from a BBQ tonight…so what. She is healthy, happy and that is just enough.
    Thanks for giving me some perspective and for the supportive comment!

  18. […] Suzanne from Bebehblog wrote herself a letter for the bad days. I don’t know about y’all, but sometimes it feels like my favorite kind of party is a […]

  19. Rachael says:

    Truly enjoyed this!!!

  20. Tamara says:

    I realize this is several years old, but I have to say THANK YOU for this beautiful post! It made such a difference in my day, so wonderfully written.

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