Motherhood and The Empty Room.

I'm so lonely, she confessed as we stood in the muddy carpark, juggling chairs and bags, post game. The sadness in her words reflected in her eyes. I have nothing. He's always at work, and it's just me with the kids, day-in, day-out. I'm exhausted, she continued. There is nothing else. I just don't get a break.

Her eyes glazed, and my heart ached for my her.

She was taking a chance in opening up to me - a new friend - and overcoming her fear of perhaps saying something she felt she shouldn't even be thinking. The guilt that enveloped her was evident in her quivering voice. There is no me anymore. I'm just so lonely.

My heart hurt with an all too familiar feeling. Lost. Lonely. My eyes began to burn. Thank goodness for sunglasses, right?!

I didn't profess to know exactly how she felt - because no-one wants to hear that. Nobody ever knows exactly how you feel. But I understood. Because the loneliness has been a part of my motherhood journey.

Without getting all ho-hum and woe-is-me, the early years of my motherhood journey were very lonely. It was a time where one door seemed to close after another and all of a sudden, I was left in an empty room with four children.  My husband was there, but then he would leave for work - sometimes for days, sometimes for a week or so. And I would remain, in that empty room, trying to maintain the normality of life as best I could. I felt abandoned by some, I felt hurt by others and I felt exhausted and alone. Surely being a mother wasn't meant to be that way.

I loved my family, but no-one ever mentioned the loneliness....

Motherhood is hard, and we weren't created to be islands. We need support. We need encouragement. We need friendship.

And for some, those things just aren't there.

For those in that empty room, the loneliness is real. Permeating. Suffocating even. They silently cry out for someone to hear them, to reach out, to be a friend. And they long for an opening - a door, a window - to escape that all-encompassing feeling of being alone.

Motherhood is a journey that can't and should not be taken alone. We need to hope that we'll get through, that we can get through and that it will be okay. 

....And sometimes, just sometimes, the smallest glimmer of hope is ignited by a chance moment of vulnerability shared between friends in a muddy carpark.

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