For my mamas, in 2021.

To all of you mamas out there who….

Welcomed a baby with a mask and no visitors.

Became first time moms but couldn’t have family come over to help.

Were suddenly preschool teachers (or elementary school teachers, or middle school teachers, or high school teachers).

Juggled work and ZOOM meetings with little hands tugging on your shirt or needing a snack.

Wondered how to navigate an ever-changing sociopolitical landscape and answer really, really hard questions.

Struggled with your own anxiety while putting on a brave face and pretending you were not scared… of illness, of injustice, of the unknown.

Went through rough patches with your spouse due to increased work and homelife demands or no personal space.

Navigated a pandemic as a single parent.

Tried hard to help others and bring light while wondering how to help yourself or keep the light inside of you alive.

Felt the weight of the world pressed upon your shoulders.

Wondered how to make ends meet.

Tried to make the holidays magical (maybe even more so than in a normal year).

Worried about the impact of isolation on the mental health or development of your children.

Can’t remember the last time you put your own needs first.

Had to give up work or personal passions because it made more sense for your family.

Had to work more or spend more time apart… because you didn’t want to put your family at risk.

Found yourselves on the frontlines and had to deal with non-believers or conspiracy theorists who continually spat upon the blood, sweat and tears you poured into keeping others safe.

Gained weight or lost weight because food provided all your comfort or none of your comfort.

Rang in 2021 with more gusto than ever before because YOU MADE IT to a new year….

You’re incredible and you did it. You’re strong as hell.  You rose to the challenge.  You will continue to rise. The world may not be back to normal and you may feel like you’ve failed in countless ways, but you haven’t. Not even a little bit.

Happy 2021, mamas.  Cheers to you.

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