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Sometimes motherhood can feel really lonely

The world is still out there, waiting for you to return to it.

Sometimes motherhood can feel really lonely

Sometimes, being a mom is like being in a village. You wearily glance around the grocery store with a screaming baby in your cart, and you catch the eye of another woman. She gives you an encouraging little smile and slight shrug, and you know she gets you. She's with you in that moment of personal hell, giving you that shred of comfort you so desperately need.


Sometimes, you sit back and relish in the fact that there are millions of other women around the world feeling exactly how you feel, experiencing exactly what you're experiencing, and it's magical.

But sometimes... motherhood is lonely.

Sometimes, you're awake in the dead of night with a nursing baby, your husband snoring next to you, your cat curled up and snoozing by your feet, even your wild, childless friends long passed out, and you feel like the only person in the whole world who's not asleep.

Sometimes, you look in the mirror, and you don't even recognize the person looking back at you. Greasy, tangled hair, long overdue for a root touch-up; dark, sunken eyes; pale, hormone-wrecked skin that hasn't seen the sun in weeks. Even your own reflection leaves you feeling lost.

Sometimes, you're scrolling through Facebook with a baby attached to you for the third solid hour, and see your friends on a girls' trip, or at your favorite wine bar, or laughing at an inside joke, and you feel like you're the only one on the outside.

Sometimes, despite spending an entire day with another human glued to your chest, you feel like you've been in complete isolation. You haven't spoken normal adult words, in a normal adult voice, to a normal adult human, and in fact, you haven't actually done anything productive at all.

Sometimes, even though he's sitting just on the other side of the couch, your husband feels a million miles away. Because who has the energy for a coherent conversation after a long day of shushing, bouncing, and rocking a cranky baby, let alone any form of intimacy?

Sometimes, motherhood is just lonely. And that's okay. Because you know what? It's also rewarding. And fulfilling. And exhilarating, and mind-blowing, and exciting, and about a million other synonyms for “amazing."

Because even if it feels desolate and empty right now, it won't always feel that way.

One day, your baby is going to look you right in the eyes and say “mama" and giggle, and you'll know that baby was put here just for you, and you alone. And one day, your baby will stand up on his own, and stumble across the few feet in between you just to fall into your arms, and you will never feel more proud. These are the moments that define motherhood, not the lonely ones.

So to all the mamas out there feeling like the rest of the world has forgotten them: rest assured that it hasn't. It's still out there, waiting for you to return to it. This is just a season of life, friends. It's a hard one, but it will pass, as seasons do.

In the meantime, remember your village. Remember all the other moms in the world who are feeling exactly how you're feeling, and experiencing exactly what you're experiencing.

We get you, and we're with you.

10 must-have registry items that will change your life, mama

The baby gear heavy hitters that should be top of your list

Calling all mamas-to-be! It's a fundamental truth of (impending) motherhood that your prepping-for-baby To Do list can feel a mile long, but really the best way to feel organized is to sort out the most important item at the top of your list: your registry. Sure the items you choose to include will end up running the gamut from nice-to-haves to absolutely essential game-changers, but mamas in the know quickly learn one thing: Not all baby gear is created equal.

So while you can and should pepper your registry with adorable inclusions that aren't necessarily can't-live-withouts (go ahead, add 'em!), you should make sure you're ticking the boxes on those pieces of baby gear that can be absolute life savers once you're in full-blown mama mode. From car seats to bouncers and playmats, your play and travel gear will be some of the most obvious important items on your list, but so can unexpected things, like a super comfy baby carrier and a snooze-inducing white noise machine. So to help you sort through the must-have options, we turned to the holy grail of motherhood that is buybuy BABY and handpicked 10 of the very best essential pieces that will change your life, we promise.

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Motherly editors’ 7 favorite hacks for organizing their diaper bags

Make frantically fishing around for a diaper a thing of the past!

As any parent knows, the term "diaper bag" only scratches the surface. In reality, this catchall holds so much more: a change of clothes, bottles, snacks, wipes and probably about a dozen more essential items.

Which makes finding the exact item you need, when you need it (read: A diaper when you're in public with a blowout on your hands) kind of tricky.

That's why organization is the name of the game when it comes to outings with your littles. We pooled the Motherly team of editors to learn some favorite hacks for organizing diaper bags. Here are our top tips.

1. Divide and conquer with small bags

Here's a tip we heard more than a few times: Use smaller storage bags to organize your stuff. Not only is this helpful for keeping related items together, but it can also help keep things from floating around in the expanse of the larger diaper bag. These bags don't have to be anything particularly fancy: an unused toiletry bag, pencil case or even plastic baggies will work.

2. Have an emergency changing kit

When you're dealing with a diaper blowout situation, it's not the time to go searching for a pack of wipes. Instead, assemble an emergency changing kit ahead of time by bundling a change of baby clothes, a fresh diaper, plenty of wipes and hand sanitizer in a bag you can quickly grab. We're partial to pop-top wipes that don't dry out or get dirty inside the diaper bag.

3. Simplify bottle prep

Organization isn't just being able to find what you need, but also having what you need. For formula-feeding on the go, keep an extra bottle with the formula you need measured out along with water to mix it up. You never know when your outing will take longer than expected—especially with a baby in the mix!

4. Get resealable snacks

When getting out with toddlers and older kids, snacks are the key to success. Still, it isn't fun to constantly dig crumbs out of the bottom of your diaper bag. Our editors love pouches with resealable caps and snacks that come in their own sealable containers. Travel-sized snacks like freeze-dried fruit crisps or meal-ready pouches can get an unfair reputation for being more expensive, but that isn't the case with the budget-friendly Comforts line.

5. Keep a carabiner on your keychain

You'll think a lot about what your child needs for an outing, but you can't forget this must-have: your keys. Add a carabiner to your keychain so you can hook them onto a loop inside your diaper bag. Trust us when we say it's a much better option than dumping out the bag's contents on your front step to find your house key!

6. Bundle your essentials

If your diaper bag doubles as your purse (and we bet it does) you're going to want easy access to your essentials, too. Dedicate a smaller storage bag of your diaper bag to items like your phone, wallet and lip balm. Then, when you're ready to transfer your items to a real purse, you don't have to look for them individually.

7. Keep wipes in an outer compartment

Baby wipes aren't just for diaper changes: They're also great for cleaning up messy faces, wiping off smudges, touching up your makeup and more. Since you'll be reaching for them time and time again, keep a container of sensitive baby wipes in an easily accessible outer compartment of your bag.

Another great tip? Shop the Comforts line on www.comfortsforbaby.com to find premium baby products for a fraction of competitors' prices. Or, follow @comfortsforbaby for more information!

This article was sponsored by The Kroger Co. Thank you for supporting the brands that supporting Motherly and mamas.

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Talking to kids can come so easily. They have thoughts about everything and stories for miles. They see the world in a completely different light, and could ask enough questions to fill an afternoon.

But sometimes finding the right words for talking to kids can be really, really challenging. When choosing how to respond to the marker on the wall, or the seemingly unending why-can't-I battle, or in simply keeping healthy communication open with kids who don't want to talk, the words don't seem to come so easily.

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