10 supportive phrases all moms need to hear

6. "Do you need a break?"

10 supportive phrases all moms need to hear

I have a confession to make: Motherhood is hard work. Really hard work. There are days I struggle just to keep it together—like on those have-a-good-cry-in-the-pantry type days. Yet as mothers, we never give up.

Eventually, we get out of the pantry, dry our tears and we keep going. We do this because we love our children and we take pride in our job of raising them. No matter what we might be dealing with on any given day, there are a few simple words I think can make us feel instantly better.

1. "You are doing a great job."

Every mom knows that what we do every day is hard work. Some may argue that it's the hardest job in the world (it is definitely the hardest job I have ever had). It feels great when someone else recognizes your effort and acknowledges that we are doing it well.

2. "All your kids need is for you to love them."

There is so much pressure that society puts on mothers and pressure that we put on ourselves, to do everything that our kids need. But the reality is, all our kids really need is for us to love them as best we can. That is it. When you're having a tough day, don't worry if you are giving them too much screen time or not enough vegetables, remind yourself that you're loving them with your whole heart—and sometimes that reminder is enough.

3. "You are doing better than you think you are."

Everyone has bad days. But even on your worst days, you are most likely handling motherhood way better than you think. Take a step back and just focus on what you are doing, rather than what you feel like you are not doing.

4. "It's okay if you feel like you're losing it sometimes."

Kids will do that to you! There will be moments as a mother when you do not feel particularly proud of your behavior. At times, you may feel like you have no control and it's normal to feel this way. It happens to the best of us. Use this as your reminder to pause and make sure you are making space for yourself in this busy life.

5. "No one is as perfect as they seem on social media."

This is a big one for me. While I will admit that I get caught up in the world of social media, it is so important to be able to separate that out from reality. I personally don't often post those moments when I just yelled at my child or was unkind to my husband for no reason. So why would I assume that anyone else is? Just because we don't see others having these moments, does not mean they are not happening.

6. "Do you need a break?"

Self-care is essential for everyone, but as a mom, I can't survive without it. Take a long shower when your partner gets home or when you get home from work, grab a cup of coffee with a friend or go on a date with your spouse. Taking a break from your children will allow you to return to them with a better capacity to give them what they need.

7. "It's okay if you don't 'love every moment.'"

I don't love the sleepless nights, the fussing and the times that my son looks me straight in the eye and does the exact thing I just told him not to. The list actually goes on and on. This does not make me a bad mom. It makes me human. Same goes for you, mama.

8. "You are not alone."

One of the best things about motherhood (outside of our extraordinary kids of course) is the community of other moms that exist out there. I think it is pretty safe to say that for everything you have felt as a mom, there is another mother who will be able to relate to it. Knowing that other mamas have walked this exact same path before you is an incredibly powerful tool in getting through those tough moments.

9. "Trust your instincts."

There are so many conflicting opinions out there about what we should and should not be doing when it comes to raising our children. And while a lot of those opinions are based on research, none of them are based on your child. You know your child better than any expert or professional out there.

10. "You are the exact parent your child needs."

I read this quote by Rachel Marie Martin of Finding Joy that said, "Today in an auditorium full of parents, my son scanned the room looking for me. When he saw me, his face lit up the room. He wasn't looking for the perfect parent. He was looking for his mom." It is such an important reminder that our kids do not care one bit about all of the little things that we feel make up the "perfect" parent. They just care that we are theirs.

So to all the moms out there, you may not necessarily hear these things every day, but you can read this list every day!

Remind yourself of all the wonderful things you are doing for your children and how important it is that you are in their lives. If you see a fellow mom struggling (we all know what that looks like and we have all been there), offer her something off this list. It's amazing how far a few words can go in shifting someone's day for the better.

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After 4 kids, this is still the best baby gear item I’ve ever purchased

I wouldn't be swooning over the BABYBJÖRN bouncer after eight years and four kids if it didn't work.

I have four kids 8 and under, so you might expect that my house is teeming with baby gear and kid toys.

But it turns out that for me, the more kids I have, the more I simplify our stuff. At this point, I'm down to the absolute essentials, the gear that I can't live without and the toys my kids actually play with. And so when a mama-to-be asks me what things are worth registering for, there are only a few must-haves on my list.

The BABYBJÖRN bouncer seat is on the top of my list—totally worth it and an absolute must-have for any new mama.

In fact, since I first splurged on my first BABYBJÖRN bouncer eight years ago (it definitely felt like a splurge at the time, but the five star reviews were really compelling), the bouncer seat has become the most-used product in our house for baby's first year.

We've actually invested in a second one so that we didn't have to keep moving ours from the bedroom to the living room when we change locations.

BABYBJÖRN bouncer bliss

baby bjorn bouncer

The utility of the seat might seem counterintuitive—it has no mechanical parts, so your baby is instead gently bounced by her own movements. In a world where many baby products are touted for their ability to mechanically rock baby to sleep, I get that many moms might not find the "no-motion" bouncer that compelling. But it turns out that the seat is quite reactive to baby's little kicks, and it has helped my kids to learn how to self-soothe.


Lightweight + compact:

The BABYBJÖRN bouncer is super lightweight, and it also folds flat in a second. Because of those features, we've frequently stored it under the couch, in a suitcase or in the back of the car. It folds completely flat, which I love.

Entertainment zone:

Is the toy bar worth it? The toy bar is totally worth it. Not only is the toy bar adorable, but it's one of the first toys that my babies actually play with once they discover the world beyond my boobs. The toys spin and are close to eye level so they have frequently kept my baby entertained while I cook or take a quick shower.

Great style:

This is not a small detail to me–the BABYBJÖRN bouncer is seriously stylish. I am done with baby gear and toys that make my house look like a theme park. The elegant European design honestly just looks good in my living room and I appreciate that parents can enjoy it as much as baby.

It's adjustable:

With three height settings that let you prop baby up to be entertained, or lay back to rest, we get years of use. And the bouncer can actually be adjusted for bigger kids and used from newborn to toddler age. It's that good.

It just works:

I wouldn't be swooning over the BABYBJÖRN bouncer after eight years and four kids if it didn't work. But I have used the seat as a safe space to put baby while I've worked (I once rocked my baby in it with my foot while I reported on a breaking news story for the Washington Post), and as a cozy spot for my second child to lay while his big brother played nearby. It's held up for almost a decade with almost-constant use.

So for me, looking back on what I thought was a splurge eight years ago, was actually one of the best investments in baby gear I ever made.

We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.


This is my one trick to get baby to sleep (and it always works!)

There's a reason why every mom tells you to buy a sound machine.

So in my defense, I grew up in Florida. As a child of the sunshine state, I knew I had to check for gators before sitting on the toilet, that cockroaches didn't just scurry, they actually flew, and at that point, the most popular and only sound machine I had ever heard of was the Miami Sound Machine.

I was raised on the notion that the rhythm was going to get me, not lull me into a peaceful slumber. Who knew?!

Well evidently science and, probably, Gloria Estefan knew, but I digress.

When my son was born, I just assumed the kid would know how to sleep. When I'm tired that's what I do, so why wouldn't this smaller more easily exhausted version of me not work the same way? Well, the simple and cinematic answer is, he is not in Kansas anymore.

Being in utero is like being in a warm, soothing and squishy spa. It's cozy, it's secure, it comes with its own soundtrack. Then one day the spa is gone. The space is bigger, brighter and the constant stream of music has come to an abrupt end. Your baby just needs a little time to acclimate and a little assist from continuous sound support.

My son, like most babies, was a restless and active sleeper. It didn't take much to jolt him from a sound sleep to crying like a banshee. I once microwaved a piece of pizza, and you would have thought I let 50 Rockettes into his room to perform a kick line.

I was literally walking on eggshells, tiptoeing around the house, watching the television with the closed caption on.

Like adults, babies have an internal clock. Unlike adults, babies haven't harnessed the ability to hit the snooze button on that internal clock. Lucky for babies they have a great Mama to hit the snooze button for them.

Enter the beloved by all—sound machines.

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A few years ago, while my wife's baby bump got bigger and my daddy reading list grew longer, I felt cautiously optimistic that this parenthood thing would, somehow, suddenly click one day. The baby would come, instincts would kick in, and the transition from established couple to a new family would be tiring but not baffling.

Boy was I wrong.

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