Wednesday, July 29, 2009


So a ways back I read the book, "I Was a Really Good Mom Before I Had Kids," by Trisha Ashworth and Amy Nobile. I also saw the authors, among other moms, on Oprah a few months ago, discussing their books and the pressures that we mommies feel in our everyday lives. I highly recommend the book (and their others) to any mom, especially if you one day find yourself wondering, "What the hell was I thinking when I decided to have kids? Really, what made me think I would be good at this?" Which is sort of where I find myself on a semi-regular basis.

I know, I know, I love my kids so much I could gobble them up most days. I know that I am a good mom, and my kids know they are loved and treasured. But we all have those days where you just feel like you can't do anything right. I have had quite a few of those recently, and they have me thinking back on things I read in that book. What has really stuck with me has been the notion of all of the self-imposed pressures and expectations we put upon ourselves trying to fulfill some June Cleaver meets Gloria Steinem fantasy of what we women can, and should be able to do with our lives these days.

Why do we put ourselves through all of this?

I have been evaluating a lot of things in my life these days, as you have previously been able to read. My birthday triggered a lot of it. But I think the living situation that we are currently in also has me thinking a lot about the stress in my life, where it comes from, and how I can minimize it. And I have discovered that the vast majority of the stress I feel comes not from my kids, my husband, my dog (although I am still debating this one), money, etc. but from my own crazy expectations of what I should be able to handle. I feel like I should be able to juggle any number of glass balls, ready to fit another one into the pattern at any time, without a single one crashing to the floor. And you know what? I can't. I just can't.

I have three young kids, all of whom have their own schedules that have to be woven together so that I don't have to be in two places at the same time. I have a house to take care of, basically on my own, which means cleaning, grocery shopping, laundry, yard stuff, phones calls to get things fixed, cleaning out the basment, and all sorts of crap that would be a lot easier if my husband were around. I have to feed people, clean them, play with them, chauffer them, teach them, bathe them, cuddle them, and comfort them. I am also trying to figure out how to fit my own needs into all of this, including trying to make some money with a direct sales job I have had for about 9 months.

I do have a nanny for 8 hours every weekday, and this helps TREMENDOUSLY. I pack as much as I can into those 8 hours so that at 4:30, I can just be with the kids, and focus on them. It also helps that I don't have to drag three kids through the grocery store, drug store, Target, whatever, because that is not fun for any of us. And I try to have some one-on-one time with each of them during the week. I am so grateful that we are able to have someone here to help out when Alex is away. But I am on solo duty the other 16 hours of the day, and it isn't like that stops when the kids are in bed. Just the other night, I was up until 2 AM with various children, fell asleep, and was back up a little after 5 AM with my oldest. And we had a packed schedule the following day, so it was tough. Add into that 3 children who all have colds, and it has been a rough week.

Now with all of this going on, why on earth would I think that everything would run on-time, with no problems? And why do I feel like such a failure when it doesn't? I have been feeling down on myself the past week for not living up to my own expectations. I have been thinking that maybe we need to move to Virginia sooner than next spring. We had this neat little time line in my head that we would get into school, get the house ready, put it on the market in January, and then try to move in the spring. Well, I don't know if our family will make it that far without a major crisis. The kids are really feeling the stress of daddy not being here, and so are Alex and I. So I have been thinking that maybe we should move sooner. And I feel like I have failed. I have failed in keeping things running smoothly, and managing the stress of the situation. I have failed in being the rock for this family. I have failed in living up to this artificial time frame that I created for myself. Seriously?

I think the kicker came the other day when I realized I hadn't taken any pictures for my 365 blog
in a couple of days. I have been slow on posting, but I have been getting pics everyday of something. Well, I missed a few days recently, and I started getting really annoyed with myself. I mean, really, how hard is it to take a freaking picture everyday? Just one? Then I stopped. I would have kicked myself in the ass if I could. I was getting this down on myself over a blog? Do I not have seven million other things that are more important and worthy of my worries?

Why do we do this to ourselves? Why do we feel like we should be able to do everything that is asked of us, and do it perfectly? Where did this idea come from that we are not a "good" mom if we don't sign our kids up for all these different activities, go to a certain school, feed and not feed them certain things, that we have failed at motherhood? And to top it all off, we should do all of these things on time, with make-up on, hair done, and a smile on our faces. God forbid we actually give a truthful answer when someone asks us how we are doing. Anything less than, "Everything is going great," and people will get uncomfortable with the honesty. But we all feel the same way.....there is no way we can get it all done.

So I am trying to adjust my expectations, of myself, my kids, my life. I am trying to see things not as a failure, but simply as changing my mind. Because that is exactly what it is, and why do I feel like I am not allowed to do that? I think moms try to do way too much these days. I know this has been discussed many, many times before by others. The book does an excellent job of putting together conversations with real moms about what their lives are really like, behind closed doors, at the end of the day when no one is watching.

Anyway....I am hoping that a change in my own internal attitude will help change a lot of other things in our house. I am hoping that I can be a happier, more fun mommy by letting go of the feeling that I should be able to cram 20 hours worth of stuff into 5 hours. No one will suffer because the bed isn't made, the laundry isn't folded, or dinner gets delivered by the pizza guy. We will all be better if we stop a little more often and take time to enjoy each other. That is what my goal is right now.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009


So here is a thought that I have been mulling over the past week or so. The vast majority of parents think that their children are the most beautiful things in the world. Since 99% of kids look like their parents, does that make us all a bunch of narcissistic a-holes?

Oh, and my dog peed on my couch twice yesterday. TWICE!!! He is just begging for a new home....or a shock collar at the very least.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Liquid Gold

So I am having a mommy dilemma, both of the emotional and the practical varieties. Sam, and the rest of us, have been struggling with acid reflux for about 2 months. It set in around 4 weeks of age, and has been rearing its ugly head since then. Georgia also had terrible reflux as an infant. It was awful. I have a vivid memory of being at my parents' house and her just screaming. Not crying, but screaming in pain for hours. She wouldn't eat more than a few ounces of her bottle, wouldn't sleep for more than 30 minutes or so, and whenever she was aid down on her back, she would start wailing withing a few minutes. I remember holding my baby girl, both of us crying, and my dad taking her out of my arms and telling me to go to bed and get some rest. After that we went to the pediatrician, got some Zantac, and things improved a lot. But we still had many problems, and went through all different kinds of formula until she ended up on a hypoallergenic one. It was called "liquid gold" in our house, because it cost just as much. But that formula was a gift from God. Within 48 hours, I had a totally different baby. One who ate. And slept. For 2-3 hour stretches during the day, and 12 hours at night. It revolutionized our home and life.

So when Sam started exhibiting signs of reflux around 3-4 weeks of age, I did not hesitate to talk to the pediatrician about it. She immediately started him on Zantac, and we started to see an improvement in his symptoms. She also suggested trying a lactose-free formula so it would digest faster. We did that for a week, but did not see much change, so we went back to the regular stuff. His dose has been increased with his weight gain (which has been astonishing to me!), rice cereal added to his bottles, and his symptoms have been pretty well controlled. But the past few days he has started having problems again. Not napping well during the day, screaming and pulling away from his bottle when eating, and needing to be held upright in order to be comfortable. So we went back to the doctor today.....again. He is now close to 14 pounds, but the current Zantac dose should still be helping him at that weight. So now we are going to try Prevacid. If that doesn't help things after a week or so, then we need to start changing the formula. And she suggested that hypoallergenic stuff again. I winced and groaned. She commiserated and chucked a few sample cans at me. These would get me through about 4 days. Two cans, FOUR DAYS!!!

I got in the car to drive to the drugstore and a feeling of panic set in. My pulse was racing, and I felt like I was going to vomit. How on earth could we afford to use this formula again? The Prevacid copay was 3 times as much as the Zantac. I glanced at the formula prices as I walked through the store. I stopped dead and did some quick math. Then I tried to hold down my own relfux. One can of "regular" formula is 25 ounces and costs about $23.00. We had been using the Costco brand which cost $10 per can. (WOOHOO!) The hypoallergenic stuff comes in a 16 ounce can and costs $27.00. Yup, you read that right. It costs 270% more for two-thirds of the amount. And at 35-40 ounces of liquid formula per day, that would mean using close to 2 cans per week. Cue mouth dropping.

So I started feeling sick. I had been thinking this was a possibility in the back of my head from the very first time Sam started refusing his feedings. But I kept saying to myself, "What are the odds that two of our kids would need to be on that? He will be fine with just the medication." So when the pediatrician brought it up today, a giant pit formed in my stomach. I was worrying about money. And then when Sam tried to get through his next feeding, I felt like an awful mother. He was miserable. Screaming. Red-faced. Gasping. And so obviously hungry. How could I think about the cost when my child was hurting? But I was, and I still am. How can I not in these times? Just more guilt to pile on the growing mound.

So I am stuck. I have a week to pray that the medication change will be enough. If it isn't, then we will have to face the music and figure out how we will afford this. Ugh.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

So just a few things.

First, my dog puked on my couch this morning. Puked. On. My. Couch. Thank God it is leather, but this thing has been through the ringer. And my dog is about ready to be shipped off somewhere where there are shock-collars for jumping on leather couches.

Second, why can I never get out the door without someone pooping or puking the second before we leave. Today I went through three outfits because Sam decided that I needed a little vomit to accessorize them all. I actually went out in the first outfit
after being puked on a little. I know, I know, but he is my third kid and I think you have to prioritize after a while. Plus, I was pressed for time, and I managed to get most of it off my pants. But apparently Sam was not a fan of those pants, and thought that a little more puke would do the trick. He was right.

Third, my daughter is hilarious. She drives me up a freaking wall most days, and makes me think my head might actually explode. But she is so funny. Sunday night she came up with a great one. Alex and I were sitting at the table with the kids while they were eating dinner. He was having a vodka tonic, and Georgia asked what it was. When trying to explain what vodka was, Alex told her that it was a grown-up drink, like beer or wine. Georgia sat for a second, smiled, and then said, "Wine! I should drink wine, because I whine a lot!" She then dissolved in a fit of giggles. Alex and I joined her. It was pretty hysterical.

Okay, now I have to tell you this one because I can not believe my ears. I am currently watching "The Daily Show" on DVR, as I do almost every night before I go to bed. Since I am typing, I did not fast-forward through the commercials. I just watched a commercial for a product claiming to increase penis size and male sexual pleasure and performance. Really? Are there idiots out there that think that a pill will actually increase the length of your penis? Don't you think this would be on the cover of the New York Times if it really worked? Men would be singing and spinning on the mountaintops, "Sound of Music" style. Anyway, that commercial just had me captivated for a minute.

Just a few things to throw out there. Hoping for more laughs, less puke the next few days.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

How do you know you are really a mom?

One word....poop. (Feel free to stop reading right will only get worse.)

Call it what you will. Poo, poop, #2, a BM, dropping the kids off at the pool, doodoo, a stinky. They are all the same thing. And every person I know that doesn't have kids has no idea how I, and every other mom I know, can throw that topic into a conversation so easily and frequently. Every person I know who plans on having kids says that they will never talk about their kids poop, or any poop for that matter. Especially not in public. Where people can overhear you. And NEVER EVER in a place where people are eating or drinking.

LIARS.....I call you all liars. I defy you to find a mother that has not talked about and analyzed what comes out of their child's rear end at some point in their mommy-life. It can not be done. There is some switch that gets turned on (or off, I guess, depending on how you view it) when they pull that bloody, screaming being out of you. You just can't help it. The nurses and doctors ask you about it every day when you are in the hospital. You have to count the number of dirty diapers your baby has for the first few weeks. You are asked about its appearance. You get the message that this stuff is important. You need to be checking this out. Hell, even Oprah had a whole show on poop.

So this has been my life lately. Getting my baby to poop. This was never an issue with my other two. Things have always been quite regular in that area. But with Sam, I am having daily conversations with anyone who will listen to me about whether he poops, how often, what it looks like, if it it a struggle for him. Because of his acid reflux, we were told to put rice ceral in his bottle. As any mom can tell you, this stuff does not help babies go to the bathroom. Which is usually why you are allowed to start giving babies water and fruit when you start feeding them cereal. While the cereal has been helping to keep his formula from being spontaneously spewed down the front of me, it has also been slowing down his intestines, thus causing him to be quite uncomfortable most days.

So today I placed to poop call to my pediatrician. Help me get my child to poop, normal baby poop, without screaming with belly pain. I am now in the cocktail phase. Bottles will now contain varying amounts of rice or oatmeal cereal and prune juice, trying to find the magic mix that helps the food stay down and the poop come out.

Just in case you are contemplating having kids. You should know what you are getting yourself into.

Poop. Lots of it.
I would like to know what I did yesterday to piss of the sleep gods so royally that they rewarded me with last night. It was one of the worst nights of sleep in a while.

Not only did all of my children wake me up at some point last night, but they seemed to have a pow-wow to figure out the best (i.e. worst) times to do so. Even the freakin' dog got in on it. And just as one got settled and I was getting comfortable back in bed, they sent a message to the next one, "Your turn.....Quick!! She's just drifting off.......cry......NOW!" I was up from about 2:30 until after 5 AM. The last hour was spent dealing with a dog who decided to itch and scratch himself into a frenzy. We have a bulldog, and at night he sleeps in a crate. So when he decides he wants to get out he starts moving all over the place, which makes a heck of a lot of noise. I let him go for a few minutes, but then decided to just let him out so that he didn't wake up any children, who had all just gotten back to sleep. So at 4:15 AM I go downstairs and let him outside. He pees. I let him in. He refuses to go back in the crate, so I decide I can leave him out. We will be down in 3 hours or so, no big deal.

Well he decided that he would go up and down the wooden stairs for about 20 minutes, panting and scratching himself the whole way. After I got up, yelled at him, and politely (as in "get the hell downstairs!") made him go back down, he fell asleep at the bottom of the steps. It is now after 5, the sun is starting to show up, and I try to get back to sleep.

The kids come in at 7, which would have been awesome if I had slept the whole time. I get up, run down to make a bottle for Sam, and quickly check the house for accidents. I don't find any. Until I come over to check on Dante. I discover that he has peed on the couch. WTF???? This dog has a bladder of steel that can hold it through an entire day of rain. So I know he didn't
need to go to the bathroom. He was just pissed at me. It is his own way of flipping me the bird.

I LOVE IT!!!! I got the finger from my DOG??????

Since I had a now-screaming baby upstairs I ran back up to feed him, and I will clean the couch when we come back down in a few.

Anyone want a bulldog? Just don't piss him off.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The Seriously Ugly Truth

So this is me. No make-up, hair not even dried, nothing. I am smiling, which made this picture not quite so bad....but it is certainly not flattering. If I was really bold I would put up a picture of me in a bathing suit....but, thankfully, I am not that courageous.

I celebrated my 32nd birthday 2 days ago. I have never been bothered by birthdays, not even the big three-oh. I just figure it is one more year living my life, and so far those years have been pretty darn amazing. But this year something was different when I woke up. I don't know what changed overnight, but something sure crept inside my insane-in-the-membrane head and tried to ruin my day. We went out Saturday night for dinner with some friends and had a great time. Lots of good food, drinks, and plenty of laughs. I fell asleep feeling pretty good. But come Sunday I was a totally different person. I woke up and cried. I cried in the bathroom, I cried making breakfast, I cried in my coffee, in the shower, while getting dressed. I cried off and on all day. I held it together for a bit, while my family came to visit, but I cried again after they left. I felt like I was back in the weeks after I had my babies, when I could bawl at every little thing. God bless Alex...he just gave me plenty of hugs all day and kept his thoughts of my lunacy to himself.

By Monday I was feeling much better. I had some tears when Alex left, mostly because Georgia had a breakdown when he was getting in his car. But overall, I was in a much better state of mind. So I have been trying to figure out where all the sadness and tears came from. I am an emotional person, but usually I can figure out where the emotions are coming from and what to do with them. So here is what I can come up with, and forgive me if I start to ramble.

I think I am mainly upset over how I take care of myself, or rather, how I really don't take care of myself. Now I am a mom of three young children. I know that with that job title comes a lot of self-sacrifice. All moms do it. We make sure our children nap and get to sleep by the right time, but we go to bed after midnight and get up with the sun. And most nights we have been woken up at least once during that 5-6 hour stretch. We give our kids healthy, balanced meals, and our own dinner consists of a diet Coke, a string cheese, and some peanut butter on a spoon. We make sure our kids are involved in activities they enjoy and have playdates with friends. But we are lucky if we are able to read a few pages out of a book every day, let alone meet up with a friend for coffee. I get it. It is what moms do for their families. We give of ourselves all day long in order to create caring, intelligent, happy little beings that will, hopefully, take care of us one day.

I am just like every other mom out there, who really doesn't put herself first, or even 14th, on the priority list. But I think that on Sunday I figured out just how upset I am with myself. I really need to put myself back on the to-do list, and pretty high up on it. I need to eat better, exercise, lose weight, go to bed earlier, go to the doctor, read more books (of the non-parenting variety), and just do more things because I enjoy them, not because I have to. I need to set a better example for my kids about how to live a healthy life. I have never been a very thin person, and I don't think I ever will be. I have no delusions of becoming a size 2 and prancing down the beach in a bikini. But I used to be
strong. I was healthy. I felt good when I woke up in the morning and was proud of what my body and its strength could do. I want that feeling back. I am so vigilant about taking my kids to the doctor for all of their appointments, yet I have not had a physical in over 4 years! I don't even have a primary care doctor. I make sure my kids go to gymnastics, swimming, music, etc. but I have a hard time setting aside 30 minutes for me to read a good book.

I think all of this hit me like a freakin' 40-ton brick wall when I woke up on Sunday. I am 32, and I have no idea how to take care of myself. I have been so busy trying to do the best I can for the rest of my family that I have forgotten that
I am a part of that family, and a pretty damn important one at that. How can I help my daughter grow up feeling good about herself, if I don't feel that way myself?

So today I have decided that I am going to make some changes. I am going to eat healthier. I am going to move my body more. I am going to get my butt to the doctor to make sure that I know what I need to know about my health, and can change my lifestyle accordingly. I am going to set aside time for myself everyday. Time without TV, the computer, the phone. Time to just relax, have a cup of tea, take a walk, something.

I have a long life ahead of me. I have a lot of people who depend on me. I want to show them what an amazing, self-confident, happy me looks like. Cause my kids won't remember if my make-up was on and my hair was perfectly styled when I dropped them off at school. But they will remember whether I had enough energy to go to the playground, or if I half-assed my way through life. I want my kids to see a mom that they are proud of, not because of what size pants I wear, but because I care enough about myself to make sure I am going to be around for a long, long time.

Here's to birthdays.....and hoping this year only gets better.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Getting this photo was no small feat. It was the work of a true artist, and expert in working with children. The Sears Portrait Studio photographer.

I took the kids to Sears a few days ago to have some pictures taken. I used to be much better about having them done every 3-6 months, but it has been a little over a year since the last time we were there. And with the addition of Sam, I felt like the time had come to try to get new pictures of the children taken. I made the appointment for 10 AM, figuring everyone would have slept, ate breakfast, and had some time to play before getting the car. And it wasn't too close to lunch or naptime, so maybe we wouldn't be too cranky. Fingers crossed.

Thank God I had someone there with me to help corral all of them, get them dressed, undressed, in the room, and out of the way when necessary. It was a circus, or at least it felt like it. I was sweating by the end of the photo session from the running around trying to do everything as quickly as possible before someone freaked out.

But those Sears Portrait employees....they deserve a medal. Hell, they deserve a week at the spa, or at least a decent pay raise. This woman gave her all to get my kids laughing, smiling, and cuddling at the appropriate times. She politely ignored my son headbutting everything in sight and repeatedly attempting to rip down the photo backdrops. And she actually got Sam to smile, almost laugh for the camera.

That 45 minutes was pure stress for me....I can only imagine what it must be like to work with young children and families for 8 hours every day, trying to create these perfect little memories. They must either be extremely patient or extremely medicated. Either way, I am grateful for them.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Out of the mouths of babes

So today was a very cranky day for Sam. He was just off for some reason. Not eating well, not sleeping well, and just generally a fuss-pot who wanted to be held and cuddled all day. Not the end of the world unless you are also trying to juggle other children and their needs, wants, tantrums, etc. I think all he really needs is a full tummy and a good poop. Because wouldn't that make most people feel better?

Anyway, I digress. So after we read stories tonight and turn out the light to cuddle, Georgia asks to hold Sam. He is still in my lap, fussing, as I try to get him to eat more than 2 ounces of his bottle. I tell her that tomorrow might be a better time to hold him, since he is not so happy tonight. And she, in her completely serious four-year-old way, tells me this: "I think Sam likes me better than he likes you. Maybe he would stop crying and be happier if I was holding him instead."

Nothing like your preschooler insulting your parenting skills to make you feel better at the end of the day.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Tonight I am giving a big, no make that HUGE, shout-out to all the single parents out there. I just have to say that I have absolutely no idea how you do it everyday, day after day after day.

It has been about 2.5 months since Alex started his new job in Virginia. I am still thrilled for him, for he LOVES his job, something not many of us will know in our lives but we all should. He has basically been gone every week from Sunday night until Thursday around 7 or so. He is able to work from home one day a week, usually Fridays, but he has occasionally switched it up and been away Monday night through Friday night. I know many couples and families have done this, as there are a ton of jobs out there that require quite a bit of travel. But it is hard, no two ways about it.

Now, as much as this might totally suck for us, I really feel like I have no room to complain. Because at least he comes home 5 days later for a few days, I don't have to be working outside the home, and we are fortunate enough to have help from one of two wonderful nannies during the week. So I know that although this may not be our ideal living arrangement right now, it could be a heck of a lot worse. At least we have many choices, and there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

I have been thinking a lot this past week or so about all the women out there who are doing this motherhood thing completely on their own. And I am in awe of them. Really. Is there anyone out there who is more amazing than a single, working mother of young children? Especially if that particular woman also manages to have a sense of humor and any thread of sanity left at the end of the day. I can not imagine doing this by myself, completely by myself. I mean, sure I would have my family to help out. And I would probably live closer to them to be able to take advantage of their assistance. But not having a partner involved in the nitty-gritty trenches of parenting would be extremely difficult.

I am exhausted at the end of every single day. Without exception. And then, to top it all off, I am up at least once, but usually two or three times every night. Even though I have help during the day, I rarely nap. I just feel like there is no time for napping. If I have an extra pair of hands around, I try to use the time to either run around like a lunatic, trying to get all my errands done in under 3 hours. Or I try to do something fun with the kids....go to the pool, the zoo, playground. Things that are made much easier for me when I have some help corralling everyone. I try to get dinner at least planned, if not cooking by the time Tatiana or Aimee leave, so that I am not scrambling (and crying) at 5:30 when the hungry, end-of-the-day meltdowns are starting. And actually getting through dinner, bathtime, and bedtime on my own with all three is stressful enough. Then I still have to clean up the house, put away clothes, and get things ready for camp, school, swimming the next day. Even with all that, I still lie in bed at night thinking of all the things I need to do the next day.

I can not imagine doing all of this on top of working an 8-10 hour day outside of my home. I really can't. To have to get three kids up in the morning, fed, dressed, out the door, (oh, and me too!) off to daycare, and then to work a long day, pick everyone up, get dinner ready, baths, bed, and keep everything around the house not looking like a nuclear wasteland is a feat like no other. And to not have a partner around to share in this craziness would be so stressful. I am so, well, lonely, at the end of the day. I have my peace and quiet most nights, but I don't have anyone to share it with. I don't have Alex sitting in his chair watching TV with me, making sarcastic comments about the new 90210. I don't have him snoring next to me when I am falling asleep. I don't have him there to take the next shift when I have been up 5 times before 3 AM. I don't have him there to just give me a hug and tell me I am doing an okay job with this parenting thing.

But at least I have him on the phone, iChat, Skype, and at home for a couple of nights each week. I honestly don't know what I would do without him supporting me as a mother. I crave adult conversation and contact in a way I never did before this living arrangement started. I mean I love my kids, but I can't let it all out to my 4 and a half year old daughter. At least not without creating some completely warped mother-daughter relationship that will drive her into therapy when she is 19 years old. And I can't exactly go out to grab a drink with a friend at 8:00 on a Wednesday night without the authorities getting involved.

How do these women do it? How? I know that there is this supposed feud between moms who work outside of the home and those whose work is their home and family. And I do believe that a stay-at-home mom works just as hard as those other mommies, but we don't get paid for what we do. I do believe that my work is stressful and difficult. But it is also very rewarding. And I get to be there for those little gems that my children give me once in a while. I just can not fathom what life would be like if I were still working a 10 hour day at the hospital on top of what I already do.

But I know that there are millions of women (and men) who do exactly that every day, day after day, with no end in sight. They are amazing, and I hope they know that. I hope that someone tells them how much they are appreciated and admired. Today I salute them, and all the work that they do.