I take notes like crazy. I keep a notebook in my purse and I’ve taken notes on the back of junk mail envelopes and church programs. I just hear so many things that strike me and I want to remember them.
I love to go back through my notes to have those a-ha moments all over again. During Beth Moore’s bible study on Esther, I wrote something down that she said, and it came back to me on my moms night out.
It was: We incorrectly think that some people have everything they want.
I have sat across from some of the most naturally beautiful women you’ll ever see, and I’ve heard them talk about all the different ways they feel bad about themselves.
One mom I know said she is really self-conscious about the acne she’s struggled with for years. I’ve never noticed it. Another mom talked about her sagging stomach after having children. She’s very slender and I never even thought she could feel that way or even have that problem. It’s astonishing.
I guess sometimes we think that someone who is so beautiful must be happy and have the perfect life. But that simply isn’t the case.
On Mother’s Day weekend, our Mom to Mom church group got together to see the movie Moms’ Night Out. There were more than 30 of us. And it was a fantabulous joyride of many parallels.
In the movie, we meet Allyson. She’s a scarcely-read mom blogger and over extended housewife with three little ones. We see her try to keep up with the house and get the kids to church by herself. As soon as she puts out one proverbial kid-fire, another one immediately takes its place.
At one point in all of the chain-reaction ridiculousness, she feels bad about herself. She has the kids, the husband, the house, the fabulous mini-van. She has everything she’s ever wanted, but she’s unhappy. Because she feels like she’s doing a terrible job and she can’t get it all done. And she’s put herself on the distant back burner. (Sound familiar?)
She decides to get out and do something for herself and she plans a girls night out with a few friends, while the men are in charge of watching the kids. There are trips to the bowling alley, hospital, tattoo parlor and of course, jail.
You will laugh. You will laugh some more. You will laugh some more. More. And then a wonderful, tender moment comes from an unexpected place.
Without giving too much away, I’ll tell you one of the things that really stuck with me. In reference to moms, someone says:
“You guys spend so much time beating yourselves up, it must be exhausting.”
So then you will cry. But isn’t that the truth? We do this, we do that. We do so much, yet we still feel like we aren’t enough.
This movie will make you feel better. With cackles and snorts of laughter. There were times the whole theater said “Awwwww.” And then there were knowing tears and more laughs.
We live in a world full of illusions, and a world that champions achieving more. Faster. It’s no wonder we are so hard on ourselves. You might not have that house, those kids, that man or that fabulous mini-van. But you don’t have to.
To an outsider, Allyson might look like she has the perfect life. It was refreshing to see that it is the farthest thing from perfect. And the farthest thing from what she thinks about her life. I’m not happy her life kind of sucks. I’m just glad to see her as a human walking in the exact same shoes that I have on.
After the movie our group went out to eat so we could chat more. When you learn more about your neighbors story, the walls of perfection come down and that’s the good stuff right there, I don’t care who you are. We got to enjoy a much-needed night of laughter and sprouting friendships.
The movie also shows that you never know what may be going on in the mind of someone that looks like they have it all figured out. We all need community and support. The people we assume have it all together might be the ones that need our friendship most of all.
Our mom’s night out gave me a better appreciation for my job, my kids, my husband, other moms and a whole new perspective on spontaneous child’s artwork on the walls… Allyson came up with an amazing solution for that one!
God did not make a mistake in giving your little ones their mother, my friend. You are enough. Happy Mother’s Day.
**Movie pictures courtesy of Apnatimepass.com