“This is unbearable,” were the first words Bunmi Laditan said to herself that morning.
In a Facebook post, the writer behind the “Confessions of a Domestic Failure” blog recalled the morning she was awakened before the sun by her children arguing:
It’s not yet dawn, but they’re awake and their belligerent voices are an assault on my still-sleeping senses.
“Nothing’s wrong, it’s just hard,” she wrote.
Soon, the entire family was up and gathered for breakfast. Laditan watched as her youngest son refused to eat before seeing the stack of dishes in the sink as a reminder of the tiredness leftover from the night before:
My youngest, his cute chubby face hidden by a raggedy stuffed bear, shakes his head furiously at the breakfast in front of him. I know he’s hungry. I sigh and turn to face the stack of soiled dishes I would have done last night had I not overdrawn on my energy reserves.
Again, she added: “Nothing’s wrong, it’s just hard”
Laditan’s attention then turned to her other children as they sifted through a pile of laundry that hadn’t been put away. It, too, was a reminder of unfinished chores: “I have failed to organize myself and my home. Maybe today? Doubtful,” Laditan wrote.
As Laditan prepared lunches for her school-aged children, her thoughts settled on if the meals were even suitable for consumption:
…I hurriedly pack lunches healthier than I ate as a child but somehow still not good enough by today’s standards. Is string cheese a protein?
“Nothing’s wrong, it’s just hard,” the author wrote.
Finally, getting the kids out of the house was just as inharmonious as the morning started:
I put my coat over my pajamas and give my children a once over, making sure they look like they come from a home with a mother who cares. Close enough. If we don’t leave now, we’ll be late. Someone can’t find a shoe. My youngest can’t tear himself away from his shows. He’s eating now, too. Of course he is. Put it in a ziplock bag. My oldest is lost in worries over a test I wish I’d helped her prepare more for. My middle is lost in the angst of being the middle. Note to self: give her more attention (the positive kind). My keys no longer exist in this dimension.
Then comes the refrain: “Nothing’s wrong, it’s just hard.”
Eventually, we all get where we need to go and I’m sipping a warm, sweet drink purchased like a prayer at a drive-thru. The day got going and all it cost me were a few gray hairs. Nothing’s wrong, it’s just hard.
For Laditan, the morning, like many, was far from perfect, but it was good in its own way:
Motherhood and life, two dishes messy enough on their own but when combined form a savoury, chunky stew: thick, and bubbling with potatoes, carrots, herbs, and chunks of tender meat in seasoned gravy. To be eaten at room temperature. With someone in your lap begging for bites, neck outstretched like the sweetest of baby birds.
Laditan’s honest account of raising three children struck a chord with readers:Bunmi Laditan/Facebook Bunmi Laditan/Facebook Bunmi Laditan/Facebook Bunmi Laditan/Facebook Bunmi Laditan/Facebook
As Laditan and her readers attest, motherhood is tough and some days might fall short of expectation. But that’s okay, because as Laditan wrote: “Nothing’s wrong, it’s just hard.”