Yesterday evening before sundown I was lying on the concrete in our backyard, just staring straight up at the sky. You see, Ava loves chalk and her new favorite thing to do is to trace my body on the ground. So I was lying there, no phone in my hand to scroll through Facebook, no Instagram notifications to check or respond to. It was just me lying there on the concrete, looking up at the sky for a good five minutes as Ava traced every detail of my body — my fingers, my toes, my hair.
The sky was magnificent.
I’m not talking about one of those beautiful pink and purple sunsets like the one we got earlier this week. I’m talking about a light blue, perfect cloudless sky. An endless blue sky in every which direction. It was perfect. And it was such a moment of peace.
You see, motherhood is kind of like the sky.
In all honesty, it’s pretty difficult to actually put motherhood into words. Can you do it? How would you describe it? How would you describe those incredible moments filled with bits of the lowest lows, the overwhelming frustrations when you don’t feel like you can do it even one more minute but yet, constant love through all of it? It’s not easy to describe and I know everyone always told me that, but it’s so true. You will never know what motherhood is like until you become one. No matter how many lovely, beautiful words I can use to describe those moments of high and happiness and how many negative, overwhelming, crazy words I can use to describe the lows, you just can’t put motherhood into words. But this, right here, is the best I can do.
Motherhood is kind of like the sky.
There are cloudy gray skies with light showers, just like the days where tantrums are few and far between, but they’re there. There are the rainstorms with dark grey skies, the terrible days when you’re so overwhelmed you don’t know what to do with yourself. And sometimes, you may even think you want to give up. But you never would and you know it. Because you know sunshine is coming.
And then there’s all the beauty that comes from the sky.
The days when there are a couple of fluffy clouds in the blue sky, with sun shining down — the not too hot but not too cold days. There are skies with the most beautiful sunrises and sunsets, beauty you just can’t put into words, the beauty and the unconditional love that motherhood holds and all of the moments your babies bring to you — the hugs, the kisses, the “I love you, mama” moments.
There are days when you see rainbows in the sky and can only think of the beautiful future you have ahead of you with your precious babies, or future babies.
And then, there are the days when the sky is blue and there’s not a cloud in site. They come few and far between but those days and those moments are there — they’re moments of calm, moments of peace. They’re the moments that feel like absolute perfection.
These blue sky moments are the moments when your newborn baby is asleep in your arms and you just look all over their face — that little nose, those eyelashes, those tiny ears — and you can’t help but thank God for their perfection.
These blue sky moments are the moments when your toddler runs over to give you the biggest hug and kiss on the nose, out of nowhere and you realize, “Hey, I must be doing a great job. I must be doing something right.”
Those blue skies are the moments of ordinary perfection. They’re ordinary and nothing extravagant like the trips to Disneyland or seeing your baby walk for the first time, but they sure are precious and they are oh-so-beautiful.
Motherhood is kind of like the sky and that’s really the best I can describe it.
Through the rainstorms, you can still [sometimes] see the sun shining through. And even if you can’t, you know the sunshine is coming. And through those rainstorms, you also get beautiful rainbows and amazingly colorful skies and all of the things you’d want to capture with your iPhone camera without skipping a beat. That is what motherhood is like. There are storms, don’t get me wrong, but there is so much beauty in motherhood each and every day.
Motherhood is kind of like the sky. We don’t know what’s out there but we do know there are endless possibilities. And just like the sky, we have the choice, as mothers, to interpret everything the way we choose. There’s so much beauty in rain — the look on Ava’s face as she jumps through muddy puddles is proof of that. You see, there’s beauty and happiness in everything. We just have to seek it.
A version of this post originally appeared at today.com, published with permission.