...You’re Not the Only One
A Letter From One Tired Mom to Another
Being a parent is one of the hardest jobs in the world. That's because parenthood is a mixed bag of unimaginable joys and unforeseen struggles. And, while the good days do outweigh the bad, it's hard to remember that at times. So occasionally, parents need a little alone time to enjoy a snack, sit in silence, and remember how blessed they really are. No one knows this better than a working mom of three young kids.
That's why we've turned to one of our very own Collin Street Bakery team members to help us shed some light on the joys and struggles of motherhood. We asked our own Social Media Manager, Emily Pair, to tell us what it's like being a mom—boy, oh boy, did she deliver. Her comical, sweet, and sincere reflections on motherhood are ones that are certain to resonate with countless mothers. Continue reading and prepare to relate.
To all you moms out there hiding in the pantry, you’re not the only one.
For those who don't officially know me, my name is Emily Pair and I'm the Social Media Manager at Collin Street Bakery. Our paths have probably unofficially crossed on social media. All those funny and informative posts you've seen coming from our pages, I've helped create those. Nice to digitally meet you! But on top of being a social media wizard, I'm also a wife, a daughter, a friend, and a mother to three young kids, each under the age of ten. Here's a photo of me, my husband, and my munchkins.
Image Source: Daniella Michelle Photography
And as I write this, I sit huddled in my kitchen pantry about to dig into my kids’ leftover Easter candy. As I rake through the bag, hoping the cellophane wrappers aren’t making too much noise, I begin weighing my snack options. I could go with something fruity and chewy, like that pack of gummy worms. Or, I could go with a nugget of hard caramel—hard caramel. *SCOFF* What a bunch of wasted calories. Clearly, there’s a reason it’s uneaten. I don’t even know why I even bother with this faux decision-making process. I always end up picking anything chocolate.
As I unwrap my SNICKERS® and slowly savor my small morsel of indulgence, I try to ignore the tiny fingers reaching for me from under the door. Now, to be very clear, I don’t always hide in the pantry. Sometimes, I hide in the bathroom.
I would say I’m kidding but, I’m not. And if you’re a mom, you know. There are days, when mom needs a minute, just one stinkin’ minute, to enjoy something without having to share. Because with three little kids under the age of ten, it’s very rare that I open a package of anything without three tiny faces popping out to ask me “What’s that Mom?”—most of the time, the thing I’m opening isn’t even anything worth sharing. "What is it, munchkin? It’s a package of uncooked spaghetti. Why?—do you want some?"
Image Source: Daniella Michelle Photography
I chuckle at the idea, finish the last bite of my SNICKERS®, and reach for another piece. The pantry doorknob is jiggling now, but the kid-proof door knob cover is doing its job—thank you $10 Amazon purchase. I think maybe I should get up, buuuuut I haven’t heard glass break, no one is screaming, and I don’t smell smoke. So, dad must be doing just fine. Therefore, I shall stay in the pantry for another minute.
*SIGH* At this moment, I wonder if I should be feeling more ashamed than I do. But, that question doesn’t linger long. No, I am not ashamed. Not one bit. And to any other mom who has also done this, no shame, sister-friend!!!
I know some people are all geared up and ready to fire some snarky comment. But, before you shoot your judgemental bullet, holster that criticism gun, and let me give you a little backstory on why I got in the pantry.
On top of being a mom, I also have a full-time job. This means my day usually starts well before dawn. The alarm goes off and I tiptoe into the kitchen for a cup of get-ish-done—aka coffee. Then, like a secret agent, I stealthily maneuver around my own home attempting to get as much done before the flood gates of chaos open. This means laying out tiny outfits for all three kiddos, getting myself dressed and ready, and making breakfast. Then I wake up my sleeping beauties from their peaceful slumber and usher them through their morning routines. All you mamas out there know this struggle.
Kid one can’t find their lunchbox, kid two doesn’t want to wear pants today, and kid three… well, kid three has decided that despite the fact that yesterday their favorite food was oatmeal, today they don’t like it AT ALL, and have subsequently upturned the whole bowl on top of the dog… Well, no time to be frustrated. I roll up my sleeves and dig in. I miraculously find kid one’s lunch box, wrestle kid two into pants, and pass my own plate of eggs over to kid three. Finally, after forty-five harrowing minutes, everyone is mostly dressed and mostly fed. Thus, we pile in the car and start the twenty-minute drive through traffic to school and then daycare—all of which must be completed by 8:00 AM.
From daycare, I whisk myself off to work where fingers crossed, I arrive on time. *Click click click click click* I go on my computer, compiling reports and completing projects. I steal time during my breaks and lunches to run errands, organize bills, manage t-ball schedules, and coordinate volunteering for the PTA. Even while on my own potty breaks and in the school pickup line, I answer work emails and take calls from our contractor—because if we didn't have enough on our plates, we are also currently renovating our house.
Upon arriving home, most people might sit down and relax, but not me. There are dishes to be cleaned, snacks to be fed, laundry to be washed, and a mountain of tiny human clothes to be folded. You know, tons of surprisingly tedious things which must get done so a house can be a home. Often, what this means is, that the only “me time” I find is when I’m in the kitchen cooking dinner. For some, cooking is another chore. But, I actually find it incredibly enjoyable. I like to use it as a time to decompress, focus my thoughts, and maybe, if the day has been extra hectic, hide in the pantry and enjoy some leftover holiday candy.
It’s called self-care, people, and it will change your life if you let it.
In exactly one minute, I’ll get up and open the pantry door. But for the next sixty seconds, I’m going to sit here in the dark. You see, this moment, it’s not just about having a break and eating chocolate. It’s about taking a couple of precious minutes from what can feel like the crushing responsibility of mom-life to be grateful, ironically, for mom-life. Because as a mom, in the thick of raising a family, it’s hard to gain perspective on just how wonderful raising a family can be. So as I sit, I listen to the sounds of my life.
Image Source: Howls & Horns Photography
I listen to the sweet little voice of my youngest on the other side of the door and relish the sound of my middle child laughing with my husband in the living room. I smile as I hear my oldest singing along to a Dolly Parton song in her room down the hall. I sit and savor the sounds of my chaotic and wonderful life while I polish off the last nuggets of opened candy, brushing away any lingering crumbs as I stand.
Make no mistake though. I’ve chosen this life, and if I had to do it all over again, I’d choose it again. I love every single thing about being a mom and being a wife—it’s all I’ve wanted to be. As a mom, I often reflect on my own childhood and say a little retroactive thanks to my own mom. She raised me and my sisters to be motherly women. My mother is eternally my role model, the purest embodiment of grace and poise… but looking back, I’m pretty certain she hid in the pantry a few times too.
Feeling more at peace than when I entered the pantry, I start for the doorknob, taking the last fleeting seconds of my solitude to give thanks—thanks for my home, for my three healthy children, my sweet husband, and my supportive job. But lastly, I give thanks to this tiny room in my house for allowing me the opportunity to take a break and remember to be thankful for everything else.
Emily Pair | Social Media Manager, Collin Street Bakery
The Best Gifts You Could Possibly Give Mom
Not all Mother’s Day gifts come in boxes. Sometimes, the best Mother’s Day gifts are simple, small acts of kindness to those tough mothers out there trying their damndest to raise the next generation of tiny humans. So here are some simple gift ideas you can give to mom.
- Pay her the compliment every mom wants to hear: Tell the mama in your life she’s doing a good job. Being a mom is hard and her hard work is often not acknowledged as frequently as in a traditional 9-5 job. Be sincere and tell her how proud of her you are. It’ll make her day, we promise.
- Take HER photo: When you see mama having a sweet moment with one of her kiddos, take a photo of her. She’s usually the one behind the camera capturing other people’s special moments. So, help her capture some of her own without her having to ask.
- Give her some time: If you're the significant other of a mama and you find her sitting in the pantry, in the bathroom, or in her parked car in the garage, give her a few minutes. She’s probably savoring the quiet.
- Give her a sweet treat: Give her something sweet she can snack on while on the go. We recommend our DeLuxe® Fruitcake Petites. Not only will these cure her candy cravings, but they also can be enjoyed with just one hand—a plus for busy moms on the go! And inevitably, she’ll have to share some with her kiddos. BUT, with twelve Petites per box, there’s plenty to go around.
Give Mama A Gift She'll Love
Treat mom to her favorite sweet treat. It might be a small gesture, but it's one she'll seriously appreciate. Peruse our collection of snacks and cakes perfect for a mom as special as yours.