The Two Sides To Being Vulnerable
There has been a lot of talk lately on being vulnerable in motherhood. Admitting the struggles, being honest about feelings, asking for help. I think it’s a great “movement”; it’s time for us to get real about the fact that even though this journey is more than amazing, it’s also extremely tough. It can be very lonely, immensely confronting at times and let’s be honest: downright scary every now and again.
As great as vulnerability is for our own mental health, we often forget about the other spin-off; the positive effect it has on the people around us. I don’t know about you, but most people I know have a deep desire to make a difference, albeit seemingly small, in other lives. If you are brave enough to open yourself up and become vulnerable, you can create a wonderful two-way street where you receive support and the person you are leaning on walks around with a sense of purpose.
As I have gotten older and wiser, I have come to realise that I simply love helping people. There are few things that make me as happy as knowing I made someone’s day easier or better. I also think I am great at encouraging people, and I give practical advice (only if you ask though). I am however not always very intuitive, so unless you are vulnerable and ask me, I might miss your need completely. I might miss an opportunity to step in and be your saviour.
So, if you are brave enough to break down and tell me about the chaotic morning you had with a difficult child that ended in a shouting match, I walk away from our encounter knowing that I am a safe place to you. That you are willing to share with me, because you know I will not judge.
If you are brave enough to phone me and say: “I am stuck, can you pick up my kids from school?”, I walk away with the wonderful sense of knowing that I was your emergency contact. When you were in a bind, I was the one you reached out to. I am the one that will not think less of you because you miscalculated the time it will take you to reach the school. We are all just human beings trying our best.
If you are brave enough to say yes when I ask you whether you need help, you change my life too. You give me the opportunity to do something that makes me happy.
If you are brave enough to tell me your struggles, you create a space where we can both be honest and share the things we are too scared to admit out loud. But someone has to be brave first.
So I urge you as a mum today: be vulnerable. Be brave. Ask, open up, admit, be honest, be real. Show your true colours, the real you, and create opportunity for an everyday person to step up and become your hero in that needy moment. You never know what kind of joy and sense of purpose you might be creating in someone else’s life.
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Magda is a mother, budding entrepreneur and a dabbler in words. She is originally from South Africa, but Perth became home in 2015. Her happy place is spending time with her husband and two boys, all 3 of them redheads! Most of her spare time goes into washing underpants and putting down toilet seats, but if there’s any left, you will find her with her nose in a book. Other passions include coffee and chocolate and sometimes she runs too. She loves encouraging women to be authentic, ignore the opinions of others and to become the best possible version of themselves.