Sometimes being a blogger is weird. It can be complicated when it comes to sharing struggles because someone will always have it worse and if you share something difficult, it opens you up to criticism and often times criticism is not delivered with kindness. This can be hard to handle especially if it comes during times when you already feel vulnerable. This sometimes limits me from feeling like I can completely and candidly share what’s going on in my life because I never want to come across as complaining, whining or ungrateful.
I am so ridiculously lucky and thankful to have the life I have, a family I love and a job I adore. I know I am fortunate and focusing on gratitude is something I truly do every single day. Focusing on gratitude is something I attribute to the backbone of the way I live my life and the optimism I feel comes naturally to me. I try my best to be open and honest on this blog and so appreciate you guys following my life and the experiences I choose to share in this space.
The strange thing I’ve noticed lately is that sometimes I struggle to share a lot about the “regular” days that end up feeling like one of “those” days. You know “those” days… the ones that just feel taxing and exhausting for a myriad of reasons. The kind of day where nothing HUGE goes wrong but a lot of little things seems to chip away at your patience and energy. The kind of day that feels a little more challenging than usual for a myriad of reasons. It’s oddly easier for me to share about the big things that are REALLY hard (like miscarriage and loss) but harder for me to share about the small things that can feel tough sometimes. The mom guilt. The parenting struggles. Worry and doubt. The feeling that you’re doing a billion things… but nothing well.
Yesterday was one of “those” days and my first thought as I sat down to blog this morning was move on from the day and work on a blog post for tomorrow instead of sharing a Monday recap like I initially planned. But then I thought about something else that’s been weighing on me. I thought about the way I feel when I find myself scrolling through Instagram, Facebook, blogs and social media in general. It’s almost always a picture-perfect look at someone’s life and that’s just not reality. Maybe people will share about the REALLY hard things (and I’m so grateful when they do!) but so often the kind-of-hard-but-not-really-too-bad-in-the-grand-scheme-of-things things that happen in everyday life don’t get shared. So what are we to believe? Life for everyone else is either perfect OR it’s horrible? What about that place in the middle – our real, everyday life – that’s usually really, really great but also challenging and not-so-great sometimes, too?
Yesterday was NOT a horrible day for me. But it was a rough day and a day I’d classify as one of “those” days.
I had a doctor’s appointment to go back in for some blood work related to my second miscarriage because the lab didn’t get enough blood the first time. As someone who still feels queasy at the thought of anything medical, I surprised myself by feeling okay about the blood draw going into the appointment. The nurse began to take my blood and she said my blood was draining very slow. She then wiggled the needle around in my arm and I began to feel light-headed. She moved the needle around in my vein and pushed it harder. I felt the blood drain from my head and thought I might pass out. I was moved to another room and the nurse apologized for what she called “bad needle positioning,” re-stuck me in my other arm and everything was smooth sailing.
Was it a horrific experience? Absolutely not. But it was kind of sucky in a mostly regular way. Couple that with the flickering concern and worry about what the results from this blood test will reveal and I left the doctor’s office feeling down.
And then I got texts from my mother-in-law, my dad and my best friend in Florida with photos of damage from Hurricane Irma in Sarasota, Orlando and Jacksonville and instantly felt guilty for feeling down. Now THAT is a problem. A hurricane is a REAL problem. And suddenly I felt horrible for feeling even the least bit upset and frazzled. There it was – perspective – to instantly bring me back to reality where I counted my blessings and felt foolish and ridiculous for feeling upset about my not-really-a-big-problem kind of problem.
And this is EXACTLY the kind of thing that prevents me from sharing some of the seemingly mundane things that bring me down in day-to-day life. They don’t even compare to what others are going through at any given time. But, then again, maybe they are worth sharing for someone else who just feels like they had one of “those” days, too. Maybe they’re worth sharing sometimes because real life isn’t solely made up of high highs and low lows but mostly happens in the middle. I don’t know.
I rushed to pick Chase up from preschool on time since my doctor’s appointment ran over and made it with three minutes to spare. His teacher gave him a great report and he nuzzled his head under my chin as we dashed through the rain to our car. I felt good again.
We made it home and as Chase began to eat, he winced at nearly every bite and said “tooth hurt.” I looked in his mouth and his gums were red and inflamed and he began bleeding after he tried to take another bite of his food. I quickly researched local pediatric dentists on my phone and was able to get in to see one in the early afternoon. Mom guilt flooded over me. How did I not see this earlier? He had a high fever on Thursday… was I wrong when I didn’t call the doctor? Are we not doing a good job with our son’s oral hygiene? What did we do to cause this?
The dentist examined Chase’s mouth and immediately told me there was nothing we “did” to cause the inflammation and it was related to a common viral infection and should go down within a week or so. (It’s also not contagious. Thank goodness because I instantly worried about his preschool classmates and teachers.)
We arrived home, I made Chase a smoothie hoping it would help him get some food in his belly in a pain-free way and tried to get him to relax before his (delayed) nap as we rocked and read a book together in his nursery. He quickly fell asleep… for 30 minutes.
I had just enough time to begin working and checking things off my to-do list for two upcoming brand partnerships. I was counting on his naptime for a solid two hours of work but knew that would have to wait when Chase woke up and his mouth was clearly bothering him. He was crying and uncomfortable and I didn’t know what to do to make him feel better. I scrapped my work plans and turned all of my attention to Chase and helping him feel cared for, comforted and loved.
So throughout the day yesterday I felt like I was failing as a mom. I felt like my body was failing me. I felt like I was failing at my work. I felt like I was failing as a wife when I snapped at Ryan at the end of the day.
I felt like I was failing left and right.
And part of me thought all of that wasn’t worth sharing. Maybe it’s not? Maybe it reads as one big whine fest but but then again maybe it doesn’t because maybe a few of you out there have felt like you were failing at times, too. Maybe it wasn’t one horrible, horrific thing that happened in your day to make your day a really bad day but maybe it felt like one of “those” days anyway. Maybe it’s OKAY to share when we have one of “those” days that wasn’t THAT bad but also not THAT good either, because that’s real life and that’s how life goes. It’s not always happy, easy, seamless, beautiful and Instagram perfect.
It’s missed deadlines, feeling sick, feeling defeated, doubting yourself, doubting your parenting and all of the messy things that come along with real life.
So for my recap of my Monday, I’m just here to say that my Monday was one of “ those” days. It wasn’t a BAD day. It wasn’t a GREAT day. It wasn’t the kind of day that deserves pity or sympathy or cards. But it wasn’t perfect either.
THank you for posting thing! I had the same kind of Monday and the same feelings about not wanting to seem ungrateful. I did feel stressed to the max and inadequate. And a friend told me I was too blessed to be stressed. I know she’s right, and I try to focus on that. And you’re absolutely right about the illusion that everything in everyone else’s life is either picture perfect or terrible. Thanks for sharing one of your “not so great but not truly horrible” day. God bless and continued prayers ?
Julie, this is one of my favorite posts that you’ve written. Because most of all of our lives reside here–in the middle. And the “middle” is something that we all can relate to. It is so “human.” And it is important and refreshing and necessary for us all to share, connect, and support each other in that space. No matter how mundane it may seem So, thank you so much for your post. You could not be more right that life is not always high highs and low lows or Instagram perfect, but it is life and for that reason, it is something to be grateful for. And even at its most mundane and imperfect and frustrating, life can be beautiful.
Oh Julie, I’m sorry you had ‘one of those days’. We all have them and sometimes we just need to vent to get things off our chest. Once we say things or read them out loud it puts things into perspective and maybe what we thought was so bad, isn’t really that bad at all. I’m having more of those days because I’ve been away from my family and friends for going on 4 years and the driving back and forth almost every other weekend back home is really starting to wear on me. I’m trying to focus on the good things going on right now but sometimes it’s easier said than done. Thank you for sharing your ‘not so great’ day and continuing to be the great person you are! I hope your family and friends are able to recover quickly from the hurricane and I hope Chase’s tooth gets better soon!
Thank you for sharing. I find myself feeling so overwhelmed at the little things. Failing at this, that and the other. Social media really doesn’t help. Feel free to share your “those” days more often.
courtney k says
It is so good to read this – “those days” happen to everyone but sometimes can feel isolating. It instantly make “those days” better when you can relate to some one else’s “those days”. thank you for your honestly, always!
Seriously thank you for sharing this! Share anytime Julie, I love reading everything you write. High, low, middle, sideways 🙂 You make my day everyday!!
Hi Julie! Long time reader here! Loved this post. So much of what floats around on the Internet is the picture perfect edited results of life. Sometimes I’m left feeling like my career, life, adventures, and relationships don’t measure up because they don’t always look as beautiful as Instagram looks. People who claim to have it all together are liars, haha! We are all doing our best. You are doing a great job. I’m sure you don’t want or need any unwanted advice, but I find that when I am feeling spread too thin, it’s time to delegate. You’ve worked VERY hard to build your career. If you’re able to afford it, I might suggest a babysitter or something for Chase in the morning a few days a week. You’ll be able to fully focus on it for that time, and Chase will never miss a beat. He’ll grow up knowing that his kickass mom loves him and can rock it in her career too. Keep up the good work!
I’ve been a follower for roughly 6 years now and this is definitely one of my favorite posts you’ve written. So much of daily life is living “somewhere in the middle” but it seems like more and more, the pieces of people’s lives that we see on social media are either the high highs or the low lows. It’s an unrealistic picture of life. This blog post is a day of real life and I really appreciate your vulnerability in sharing it.
I recently read the quote “Telling someone not to be sad because someone else has is worse is like telling someone not to be happy because someone else has it better.” We all have our joys and struggles that are unique to our lives and it’s okay to feel bad on “those” days when they come. Sending you love and wishes for a better day tomorrow!
What a great quote! Thank you for sharing.
Amy Ramos says
Thank you for sharing. Lots of hugs. We have those days. Even last week, I had a hard week.
I am thankful for what I have and that my husband and I celebrated our 9 year anniversary!
We do trips instead of gifts and I am thankful I have a partner that wants to do road trips and puts up with my crazy aype A personality!!
Julie, I just read your ‘one of Those days’. I found it linked to ‘the lean green bean’ blog.
Let me just start by saying I am a great grandmother. You are right and now see by the response that lots of people have those days. ( I remember them when my children were small)
Reading you ‘one of Those days’ blog, I heard again my daughter sharing/questioning things like you have.
Now let me ask you how can you be a failure when you care so much, try to make it right, and struggle to meet family needs? That is a person who is being a success by meeting the challenges as they come.
Keep up the good work and may God Bless you and your family as you go forward.
I really appreciated this post! I have a little girl who I am so thankful for, but some days are so draining and hard. And I always feel guilty saying that out loud because I don’t want people to think I am not grateful, But you said it perfectly, sometimes its just one of those days and it’s okay to vent about those too.
Thank YOU!111 this is one of my favorite posts from you ever!11 I think we can all agree that “those” days make the great days more meaningful no help us appreciate them a little more! I hope everything gets better for you!
This post really resonated with me. I just went through my 2nd miscarriage as well & I’ve finally comed to terms with the fact that a miscarriage sucks – plain & simple. I don’t feel guilty anymore about my frustrations with it. There will always people that have worse stories but that doesn’t take away from the fact that a miscarriage just sucks. It’s a truly awful thing to go through. Those stories that are worse than mine do help me in trying to be positive & have faith – but they no longer make me feel guilty about feeling bad for myself. It’s okay to be extra annoyed (on the inside) at that nurse for not getting it on the first stick, or annoyed at the young happy, naive pregnant couple in the waiting room, or the pregnant women you hear complaining about their symptoms ….the list goes on & on:( I never show these feelings on the outside, but I let myself feel them on the inside & I don’t get down on myself anymore for those feelings. Infertility & miscarriage sucks, no matter what. It’s unfair that some women go through it & others don’t. The emotions of it are exhausting. Letting myself feel all these feelings (again, on the inside) has really helped me stay sane & amorw peace during this difficult time. I hope you find a way to not feel guilty about any of your feelings because they are valid!
I have read your blog for years and this post was the most refreshing in awhile. I think your optimism and positivity are good qualities. However, reading your blog since you have been able to work from home with Chase has made me resent your seemingly charmed life. I have always assumed there are large chunks of your life that never end up on the blog. It is really nice to see the middle ground. It helps us all to stop seeing each others lives in extremes.
Just out of curiosity, i don’t see much negativity in your comments section, do you delete the comments that are mean spirited or do people send them to you privately?
I don’t delete many comments at all unless they are truly cruel (aka not at all constructive) and mean toward my family.
This post is perfect, because we all have those days. I’m in the Central Florida area, and a lot of us have been without power for days. Some got it back sooner. Some did not. Lots of posting was going on in a local group on Facebook. Lots of people were “complaining” about not having power. Some were being rude and making posts and comments for these people to stop “complaining”, and to remember how lucky they (we) were that it wasn’t like Texas or parts of the Caribbean. While that’s true, my point and thought was that just because we are saying it sucks to not have power, doesn’t mean we aren’t thankful and aware how fortunate we are. I know for me, it was really rough having a 5 month old, 3 year old and 5 year old without power for 6 days. We found ways to cope and eventually my parents got power and we stayed there, so we weren’t living without power for those 6 days. But it was a rough week. So when people tell others to “suck it up”, life could be worse. It’s just rude and not necessary. You never know what someone’s full situation is. And as I said, I was SO thankful it wasn’t worse. But that doesn’t mean it still didn’t suck for a few days there! So thank you for sharing one of “those” days. Its real and its your life. And while someone elses “those” day might be worse, doesn’t mean your day is not worth your own feelings. So thank you for continuing to share real life. Thank you 🙂
Amanda Cherry says
Julie, I thought of your post yesterday. I was having “one of those days”. Two year old testing my patience with everything..then I would feel guilty, thinking I was a bad parent…I loved on him had last night before bed.
Nicole @ Laughing My Abs Off says
Thank you so much for sharing this, Julie! I think too often we discount our feelings, when really, feelings are REAL no matter what brings them on. We should never ever feel that we can’t be sad or upset or tired if on the surface, everything is fine, because it’s the inside that really matters.
You’ve probably already heard of them, but you might check out the “One Bad Mother” podcast. They talk a lot about all of the “stuff” that happens during your day that nobody else really gives a crap about (except maybe your partner), but is so influential in how our day goes. They’re seriously funny and I’ve had so many moments of “I’m not the only one!” when listening to them. There’s even a hotline you can call into to leave a Mom Rant haha. And if you already listen to them, then great and you’re doing a good job!!
Love the comments.
I actually snarked on my mom on the weekend when she asked me why I was so cranky. It’s not easy to take care of my life and my family and be there for them 60 miles away and their problems if being 89 and 90 and my dad losing his sight in the course of two weeks. It’s also 102humidex outside their AC is off as they freeze and I am a menopausal hormonal bitch.
I said ARE YOU SERIOUSLY ASKING ME WHY IVAM CRANKY???
Yes I regret saying that but every day that they are above ground is a gift
I need to sit down and not worry and stress out. Easier said than done but we ALL HAVE THOSE DAYS
Yes, yes, all the yes!!! I LOVED this post. Sometimes “those days” are just plain hard and its okay to say so! Thank you for sharing 🙂
Hang in here, Mama!! You’re doing a great job!
We all experience `those’ days. Even when we are older and our children grown up.
I am 47 and also feel totally blessed with my life and my family, and it would be totally unrealistic and false of you to always be cheery and an `example’ because you have a blog people love!
Well done on the honesty
Hi Julie, thank you for this post. I appreciate the genuine tone and the honesty with which you wrote it. Even though I am not a mother, I can relate to the feelings of failure and the anxiety you felt on a day where things did not go great. You poignantly touched on the guilt we (women) load onto ourselves when we are not able to have a “good” day every day. It is obvious you are doing a tremendous job as a mother and I appreciate you articulating these types of “days” and your overall optimistic viewpoints about life despite “days” like this. I am too often bored and annoyed with online blogs and social media that read like fiction because of the sugar-coated words and photos accompanying each post. I hope we continue to see more candid snapshots of your thoughts during your everyday life. Thank you for what you do.