Ever feel like you just have so many things to think about, remember, and worry about when it comes to running a household and a family? And does it perhaps sometimes feel like that mental load isn't shared by your partner?
That's how Meredith Ethington felt when she shared her thoughts in a Facebook post entitled "Thoughts mums have after a long day of work". In the post, she lists 19 things that were going through her mind that evening that might have lots of us nodding our heads in agreement. Things such as, "OMG this house is a mess," "Do we have enough bread for lunch tomorrow?" and "Did I put the laundry in the dryer?"
Other relatable thoughts going around in Meredith's head included:
"I hope I can get some sleep tonight. Like, actual real sleep where I had a dream, or twitch, or something. I should buy a sleep mask."
"Did I hit send on that email?"
"Is it too late to register the eight-year-old for soccer that is six months away?"
"Are they caught up on their shots for school?"
"Do we need more cat food?"
"I should clean out their closets." (It's unclear whether Meredith is talking about her kids or her cats here, but that could be indicative of just how chaotic things are in her brain.)
"How is the ceiling fan dusty? Like, for real. Why is there so much dust on a fan that spins all day? How is that even possible?"
"I keep seeing spiders. Need to call the exterminator."
"I hope I bought the right sunscreen and not the one that will give them a rash."
"When was the last time I watered my flowers outside?"
Meredith's post was accompanied by a picture of her husband taking a snooze on the couch in the afternoon sun.
She ended the post with, "Thoughts dads have after a long day of work: 'I'm going to lay down here and take a nap real quick.'"
Meredith said she wasn't sharing the post to shame her husband or complain about dads, but rather to highlight just how much mothers tend to step up to carry the family's mental load. And that she wishes she could just focus on having a nap.
The post had mothers fist pumping everywhere.
One mother wrote, "I am exactly this mum – I'm always '50 things behind' which haunts me all waking hours and my hard-working husband isn't burdened with so many of life's details I'm cursed with. God wired us differently and we carry different loads because of this."
Another mum commented, "I totally get the humour and understand what you mean. I have a great husband who is hard-working and loving but he has the ability to not see or think about the details it takes to keep our life running. I am not wired like that. Sometimes I wish I could be like that for a day, just to see what it feels like."
Don't we all.