That's how motherhood feels to me at the moment.
I didn't become a mom to receive praise or even appreciation--I know who I am, what I'm doing, and I'm confident that I'm doing my best. Two of my kids tested that core belief yesterday on the holy grail of parenting holidays: Mother's Day. One of them refused to do anything helpful or nice, and the other completely ignored me, a passive-aggressive holdover from the day before (as in no eye contact, no words--nothing). This is actually not that unusual except that it seemed amplified on a day with such high expectations. All I wanted was for all my children to go to church with me and they couldn't even do that.
I never understood how some women had a hard time on Mother's Day. But now I get it. You see those sweet Primary kids sing at church and think, "I had some of those, but I don't know where they went." When they're young they want to please you, to make you happy. They can't wait to give you the craft they made. And when they get older they want to pretend you don't exist.
It's times like these that make me say, Lord, please tell me you know what you're doing because this life is pretty unpleasant.
I know that when certain kids can hardly handle their own lives it's pretty hard to give anything to anyone else. I know it--but if I could just switch off my feelings then it wouldn't hurt so much.
(Yes, it did hurt. I wish I could say that I'm bigger than that but I'm not.)
But looking beyond my pain, I am grateful for a loving husband who shows and tells me how appreciative he is of me. He and the other two kids did their best to make me feel special and I did. I am grateful for my own wonderful mom and for Bryce's mom, who are examples of love and goodness. I am grateful for my friends who are mothers and for those who have mothering hearts. I learn from them every day how to better bless my own family.
I know that motherhood is an eternal calling and I am thankful for that. It gives me hope that when things shake out in the eternities, I will be able to take all I know and have to offer and be the best version of what my children so desperately need but are unable to accept at this time.