A spoken-word poem by U.K.-based mom Hollie McNish has more than 6 million views on Facebook (at time of writing) because it's so darn relatable, you'll feel like you could have written it yourself. Except maybe less eloquently. And far less rhythmically.
McNish's roughly 2-minute poem is about the often-thankless job of being a parent, and how once you have children, it is easy to feel like you've lost your own identity.
I totally feel McNish when she bemoans being known as so-and-so's mom, instead of by her name, at playgroups and around town. And I am so her when she describes the endless, 24-hour shift that makes up motherhood, and how it can break a person, leaving them crying alone in their car.
"We are parents, but we are people," McNish concludes from her kitchen. And it may sound like a simple statement, but really, how often do you forget about yourself? That you exist outside of changing diapers, wiping bums, fixing meals, cleaning up toys, bathing little bodies, and reading bedtime stories? That you have needs, and dreams, and likes and dislikes that have nothing to do with being a mother?
I contend it's especially easy to lose yourself when your kids don't think of you as anything but Mom. I literally have to remind my kids that "I'm a person, too," when they gripe about waiting for me to use the bathroom, or, Lord forbid, eat something! But hey, it took me years to realize my mom was a person, so I can hardly blame them!
If you love McNish's poem, check out her spoken-word poem about breastfeeding, which slams critics of the natural baby-feeding practice.
Melissa Willets is a writer/blogger and soon-to-be mom of 4. Find her on Facebook where she chronicles her life momming under the influence. Of yoga.