thoughts on motherhood
part three

May 12, 2019

It's officially Mother's Day! If you haven't read the previous posts on this series, Thoughts on Motherhood, Part One and Part Two be sure to check them out! Today I wanted to focus a little on how we face challenges in motherhood. Here are some thoughts from Fujika about being a mother: "Life being a mom is filled with learning. I have learned things that I never knew to remove stains from furniture, cook dairy free food, dealing with teething and diaper rashes, lol, but mostly, I learned to be a better listener and forgiver. Also, I have learned what really means to love someone so much. I know I am not a perfect mom but I feel like they are teaching and preparing me to be better mom and a person."

I asked Fujika what the most challenging part about becoming a mother was and she said, "Having MY time. Being selfless is my eternal goal. my days are started and finished by picking up toys and cleaning food on the floor."

One of the biggest things we give our kids as moms is our time. It takes time to soothe a crying baby, it takes time to sit with your kids as you encourage them to eat their vegetables (my daughter is the only one so far who does it without complaining, haha), it takes time to clean and clean again the messes our kids leave in their wake, it takes time to cook meals, it takes time loading your kids in and out of the car as you run errands or take them to activities. This list is never ending and you don't always get a 'thank you' for your effort.

Yumi remarked, "A mom has a lot of work but it's so important for your kids to see you happy and smiling. (Even though it's so hard!) I'm always striving to be grateful for the small things and to be present with my kids and laugh with them together"

Every mother's challenges are unique to them and what's important is HOW we take on those challenges. Martina has had a lot thrown at her but the way she has faced her challenges is truly beautiful. I'll let her tell you her story.

What was the most challenging thing for you about becoming a mother?

"The most challenging things about becoming a mother were the emotional and physical weight of having to care for another tiny human being. I've always been an independent person. When I lost the use of my legs, there were many unknowns as to how life would be and how things were to be done, but the one thing I knew with certainty was my determination to be my independent self and do things for myself. Over the years, I have been able to do just that--finding new ways to do things I did before like cook, clean, attend classes, work, drive, travel, etc. When I learned I was pregnant, it seemed liked the unknowns of motherhood in a wheelchair would stretch the complexities even further. How would I get baby in and out of the crib, how would I buckle him up and get his car seat in and out of the car, how would I teach him how to do physical activities like ride a bike? Being the only person in my family and social circles to go through motherhood in a wheelchair has been most challenging. However, like with everything else, I've tried to do it as independently as possible, figuring things out along the way, and being kind and patient with myself to make mistakes and learn. This is not to say I did not receive any help in between (because I received plenty of help and am so grateful), but I keep trying my best to live the life I am meant to live. I am trying to rise strong."

What do you love about being a mother?

"Motherhood is challenging for any mother. You've got your good days and your bad days because both your kids and you are humans--moods, reactions, thoughts are varied. My favorite things about being a mother is that through it all, I get to see all sides of my little kids; I get to know them super well; I get to see how they are learning and progressing; I get to raise them to grow into the great people I hope and wish them to be someday."

What do you love about your kids?

"I love their zest for life! They just want to have fun and enjoy the moment, which is probably why they don't love cleaning, although I'm trying to get them to like that, too. Their presence is healing and hope for any rough day. They remind to me get out of the grind and enjoy the moments life has to offer."

What advice would you give to new moms?

"There is not a right way to raise your children but there are many people who will say so. Know who you are and what you value in a family and implement that in your parenting style. Know that you are an ever progressing human and will change along the way, and that's OK. Just learn as much as you can, gather as much knowledge as you can, and determine what best suits you as a parent. Be kind to yourself and be kind to other parents, too. Just do the best you can to keep you and your family happy, healthy, and thriving. That's all we can ask for. Make sure you are enjoying those little things in the process. Don't let life pass you by."

What helps you through the difficult days of being a mom?

"When kiddos are overwhelmingly energetic...which sometimes leads to disobedience, you may be tempted to react mean-spiritedly. Take a step back, and give yourself some mommy quiet time away from the situation. You don't need to respond right away. Having that break helps you calm down and get perspective as to how you want to handle the situation and what message you want to give to your children at the end of all of this. Discipline is important to help our children learn and grow, but they should always feel your love and understand your intentions--what you're trying to teach them."

Are you a stay at home, work at home, or working mom? What do you love about it and what is challenging about it?

"I am a working mom and there are many loves and challenges that come with it. I am grateful that I am able to provide for my family, grow professionally, build many relationships, while having an opportunity to help my children and spouse as well--they bring me so much joy. However, some days things don't run as perfectly (but 'tis is life), where my spouse and I didn't communicate as well and didn't do as great of a job allotting children time, us time, friends time, etc. Life is a constant balancing act with lots of wins and challenges, and we love it and are so grateful for it."

You can read more about Martina and her adventures over on her blog here! In the journey that is motherhood trials will sometimes meet you at the very start of your journey. Many women, including my sister Tyla, are struggling with infertility. I asked her to share a little bit about her struggle.

She said, "Well I've always wanted to be a mother. It's something that I've always desired ever since I was little. I think one thing people overlook is that infertility doesn't just affect the woman it also affects their partner. My husband feels just as much sadness and emptiness as I do, and I feel like for me it's also hard because it's something they can't fix. Some things that are challenging is seeing the pregnancy announcements. It's hard because you are happy for that person but at the same time you feel sadness, and jealousy because it's not you making the announcement. Infertility consumes your whole life. You can do your part in the being healthy and preparing your body for pregnancy and your partner can do his part and you can do everything right and it still doesn't work. Advice would be it's okay to cry. Sometimes you just need to let the feelings out. Another thing would be to find a support group talking about it can make all the difference. Don't give up. What ever the issue or circumstances walk together as a couple pray together and support each other."

I want to do everything I can to support my sister in her fight against infertility. Her doctor has high hopes for this next treatment, but it's also an expensive treatment not covered by my sister's insurance. At the end of my blog post Thoughts on Motherhood, Part Two I announced a sale running until the end of May (50% off a full family or newborn session when you donate to their cause, head on over to the post for the full details!) but for today only, on Mother's Day, I am offering a more amazing deal in hopes that I can gift my sister a chance on finally becoming a mother. When you donate any amount to help my sister Tyla you will get a FREE family mini session (20 minutes and 5 digitals, Utah locals). Just screenshot your donation confirmation email and send it to my email You can keep the session for yourself or gift it to someone.

Thank you so much for following this series, Thoughts on Motherhood. I hope this was an inspiration to you as much as it was to me. I'd be so grateful if you could help my sister and her husband in their fight against infertility in whatever way you can. I've enjoyed all the insights received from mothers who are so different from each other but at the same time so very much the same. We are all mothers (kids or no kids) and we should always seek to lift and empower each other.