I am ME

Posted by ~Summer~ on March 08, 2018
in ,

When the sharpest words wanna cut me down
I'm gonna send a flood, gonna drown them out
I am brave, I am bruised
I am who I'm meant to be, this is me
Look out 'cause here I come
And I'm marching on to the beat I drum
I'm not scared to be seen
I make no apologies, this is me

Today, I celebrate ME.

I might not be a powerful woman with a long list of achievements, I am not a political figure who serves the country, I can't make history or help to achieve gender equality around the world, I am not a leader whom people can look up to, and I do not have huge aspirations to make the world a better place for everyone.

On the contrary, I am just an ordinary woman, a mum of three, a daughter, a wife and a friend. I strive to make ends meet, I live from day to day, I work hard from morning to night every single day yet I sometimes go to bed feeling like I've achieved nothing at all.

I've never felt that I'm better than anyone or that I can hold it all together more than anyone. The truth is I am trying and I can only keep trying. Try to learn lessons from yesterday, try to make the best of today, and try to make tomorrow a future worth looking forward to. If there's a good time that I should make a list of my own personal achievements and make me feel good about myself, I think today is the day.

Well, it's International Women's Day after all, and I think it is important for us to feel empowered, feel strong, and feel proud. For the first time ever on the blog, here's a letter to myself.

Dear Summer,

I see your laughter, I see your tears. I feel your joy, I feel your exhaustion. I sense your exasperation, I sense your hope. For all that others might say, I know it isn't easy to be a SAHM of three doing what you do but you do it anyway without complaint and most importantly, without regrets.

People always ask you why you chose this path in life and friends say it's not something they expected out of you. They thought that you would be the one who made it big and have a successful career to boast about now that you are in your mid-thirties. They don't see family life the way you do nor understand why you would want to be a SAHM and 'suffer' all day. Boy, they are so wrong, aren't they? You've given up on trying to make them see it from your perspective because most of them can't and you jolly well know that everyone is entitled to his/her own preferences and desires in life. Never have you wavered when it comes to yours and you've always, and will always, believe that you are living your dream.

It's hard to always keep your cup half full and see life as positive and beautiful, especially on days when you almost lose your sanity and turn into a screaming monster that you don't even recognise. It's easy to give in to despair, to slam the door and walk away, to give up and lose the fight. But you, you don't throw in the towel even when you are barely standing because you know your kids are worth fighting for with every inch of your might.

I see your messy house almost every day and it's hard trying to maintain it without a helper or part-time cleaner. I see you learning to keep one eye closed because there are far more important things for you to handle other than keeping a clean house. I see you trying to train your kids to help out and while others might label it as child labour, you know that it's only the start of the journey towards helping your kids to become independent and responsible individuals.

Even though you can't cook well and are lazy to learn new recipes,  I see you trying your best to whip up simple homecooked meals for the kids. Your hands are rough from all the washing but you see it as an act of love. On days when you don't manage to cook, you bring the kids out to food courts and kopitiams and though it's funny how you always attract stares when it's 1A3C at your table, you've learnt to make it work, to multi task and in fact, to enjoy a meal out together with your kids.

No matter how much your kids might bicker from time to time or how they break your heart, the truth is they are loving and obedient most of the time and you know in your heart that you have done your best to nurture them all these years. Yes, there are many more years to come but you are glad that you will be the one right beside them to guide them every step of the way. It's also a learning journey for you as a mum and you have challenges and obstacles to overcome every so often. No one ever said this was going to be easy, right? And you, you've never been the one to seek the easy way out in your life.

You are one of those mums who never ever depend on parents for help, not your in-laws nor even your own dad and mum. The hubby thinks you can be as stubborn as a mule on some days but that is just the way you are when it comes to your kids. Well, being headstrong is probably what made you able to give birth thrice without epidural because deep down, you believe that if you set your heart to it, there's nothing you can't achieve. The parents don't come over to your house unless you invite them over for meals, they have never bathed or changed diapers for your kids and you have tried to do everything on your own, together with the hubby, ever since the first time you gave birth in a home away from home. 

Remember how you brought Angel for her check up within a week of giving birth? You dressed your newborn in layers and layers of clothes, and pushed the bulky stroller all the way through the snow to make it to the only clinic in your town when you were still healing from your wounds. When Asher came out, you brought him out the very next day after you got discharged to help celebrate Ariel's birthday in school. Confinement? For good or for bad, you were never confined. Yes, you do have weird priorities at times that others might never comprehend but it's you and you are the one in charge of your life.

It's not really nice to keep talking about how much you have to solo parent the kids, but even if you do from time to time, you earned the right to. Most people don't know how much difference it makes, having a hubby who comes home on time after work and is around during the weekends vs having a hubby who has a volatile schedule, usually works past midnight and is often away at sea. You love how hands-on your hubby is and yes, he is a wonderful dad and a terrific spouse. But him being away so often, it is an extra burden for you to bear but you know how important it is to stay supportive and hold the fort at home so he can go to work with a peace of mind. You know it's not easy being him, and the good thing is he knows it's not easy being you too.

You keep this blog going despite wanting to give up at times as it takes up too much of your time. You love to write and you love hearing stories from your readers. I see you typing away sometimes with your eyes half closed, I see you sacrificing countless hours of sleep and rest, I see you always asking to host giveaways so your readers can benefit, I see you slogging at doing growing up videos of the kids, and I feel you. I feel your passion, your willpower and your love. I know this blog is what you want to do not for others, but for yourself.

If there is anything I want to tell you, it's that you never have to be afraid of what others think of you. Your kids look up to you and they always say you are the best mum in the world, to which you laugh it off and say you are not. But to them, you are, and that is the only one thing that should matter to you in your motherhood journey. Your hubby might not see eye to eye with you from time to time, especially when it comes to raising the kids, but he applauds you for all you have done deep in his heart and you know how thankful he feels, and so should you.

Like what you've said before, being a SAHM is a privilege, not a sacrifice. You know how lucky you are so never forget to count your blessings each day. Have faith in your decisions, persevere when the going gets tough and enjoy the life journey you've chosen. Never let anyone or anything change your outlook in life or stop you from being you.

You have the right to be who you want to be in your life. You only have one, or in fact, half of it left, so do what you want, don't look back, be who you wanna be, and continue to make each day a happy one. For you are A Happy Mum, and I hope you will always be.



This post is part of the "A SAHM's Story" series where I share my experiences, tips and reflections of being a stay-at-home mum. It takes a SAHM to truly understand another and while many might assume that we are tai tais or that we get to shake legs all day long, only we know the amount of toil and sweat we put in just to get past each day. Likewise, only we know the true rewards and unparalleled joy that this job has brought us. Being a mum, and one who gets to witness all her children's milestones and spend precious time with them every day, is still the best thing that has ever happened to me. While I gave my kids life, they gave me a reason to live.

Reflections of a SAHM
Is motherhood all rainbows and butterflies?
Why you should never call me a Tai Tai 
"What's a stay-at-home mum worth?" on Talking Point 
A year older as a SAHM 
10 things I've learnt from my kids 
Not a sacrifice, but a privilege 
The story of the missing dryer 
I am ME

Tips from a SAHM
8 ways to be a happy SAHM
12 rules for a happy marriage
How to be a SAHM and not feel like a bum
15 tips to dining out with young kids
12 tips to travelling on public transport with young children 
When sorry seems to be the hardest word 

Life as a SAHM
Through the eyes of my child
Knowing that I am rich
Getting used to the chaos
Remembering I'm still me 
15 signs that you're a mum of 3


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