The Challenges and Rewards of Motherhood


I have been working on my parenting skills for a majority of my adult life. Because, I became a mom at a very young age. I found out I was pregnant with my first child shortly after I graduated from high-school. The decision to choose life was an easy one for me. As a Catholic I knew that I needed to give that baby a chance. Originally, I was planning on marrying the father but we split up and I was a single mom for nearly five years. Motherhood has been a constant challege ever since.

The Challenges and Rewards of Motherhood

Raising a very spirited toddler by myself while attending college full time was challenging. But I never gave up. I remember feeling lonely and depressed when my friends would be going out and I was stuck at home with my child. I knew that the Lord would help me get through all of that and I was doing the best thing for my daughter. I never gave up. Motherhood is also rewarding.

Today I am a mother to three children with our fourth on the way in August. I still struggle with depression, and homesickness but I try not to let that interfere with my parenting. Sometimes when my son has a meltdown late in the evening I am so tired and depressed that I just don’t want to deal with him. I hide under the covers on the couch and pretend that, “Mommy isn’t here.” I know I need to get the strength to pick myself up and take care of my kids but it is hard.


When you children are driving you nuts, or you are tired and depressed it can be hard to just get through your day. There are several families like mine that are hurting because of the tough economy. We had to pick up ourselves and move across the country. I am still homesick. My husband is the only one working and he works just part time. Life is difficult.

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Despite all the challenges of being a parent and running a household, you have to try your best to remain positive. Children can also lift your spirits like the time we were dancing in the kitchen to Disney songs. I always think about the silly things that they do to put a smile on my face. Like when we are driving in the car, but in their minds we are “going to the moon.” Or the time when your eleven-year-old decides she’d rather sit on the couch and watch “Cities of the Underworld” on the History Channel with you instead of “Hannah Montana.” And I can’t forget about all the hugs, kisses and I love you’s I get every night at bed time. Motherhood is quite a ride.

*This article first appeared on the Healthy Moms Magazine in June of 2009. The author is now a mother of five children.

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  • Cascia , January 23, 2009

    Share your story. What does motherhood mean to you? You can either tell me in a few words with a comment or blog about it with a link to this post. I want to know what you think.

  • MommaYoung , January 23, 2009

    What a good mother you are. It is very hard sometimes to be positive when times are so hard. As if battling depression wasn’t enough, we have to battle the economy too.Dancing, its funny you said that. We do that often. I get my exercise and the kids have fun. I’m even teaching my son to be a cool dude and dancing for his date.When we dance, I forget about the yuck and just purely enjoy my kids.

  • Michelle , January 23, 2009

    I agree, it’s hard being a parent and requires time and patience. Sounds like you’re a great mommy. Times are hard on us too because of the economy. We’ve often thought about moving out of state. Hope your spirits pick up soon. Oh, I also wanted to mention that you and I have similar last names. Mines Tolbert. How weird is that? Most of my family lives in the southern states. Thanks so much for stopping by and for all your sweet comments. Happy Friday!

  • Katrina , January 23, 2009

    Thank you for sharing your heart in this. We can all relate, as mom’s, at times. It’s a tough job but we wouldn’t give it up for the world, would we. I admire the truth you show here. Thanks for stopping by my blog the other day, I really appreciate your comment.I’ll let you know if I blog about this… :o)Have a good weekend!

  • Sarah , January 23, 2009

    I certainly understand the homesickness…we moved from MN to TX this past summer and man I am so ready to move home!!

  • jen@odbt , January 23, 2009

    Thanks for your honesty. Parenting is not always easy and there are times where I often just want to get in my car and drive away but I don’t. I like to give myself time outs when I feel like I’m going to lose it…it gives me a chance to step back and remember why I’m here. I like the quote from the movie Parenthood – life is a roller coaster with its’ ups and downs, you can choose to ride or stay on the carousel which just goes round and round.

  • Abi , January 23, 2009

    Parenting can be the most horrible inescapable responsibility… and it can also be the best thing ever!I had my first at 16… yep… it’s been a ride!!You sound like you’ve done brilliantly… I can often be found hiding and letting my husband deal with them….

  • Alexandra Stephenson , January 23, 2009

    That was really well written! It sounds like you & I have a lot in common. I had my first son about 8 months after my high school graduation. He's about to turn four now. There were a lot of tough times in the beginning (particularly those 10 months I spent living with my parents). Things are a lot better now. I enjoy motherhood for the most part. I could deal without all of the poop. lol

  • pam , January 24, 2009

    Cascia, I think I will take your challenge and think of a blog post in the next few days.Pam

  • Nicole , January 24, 2009

    I know how you feel. If you get a chance check out my post from this week.

  • Muthering Heights , January 24, 2009

    You are so strong…I could never imagine being in college and a mother at the same time!

  • Toni , January 24, 2009

    Wow. Single parent of a toddler! That so impresses me! I sometimes struggle with my toddler and have someone to help. I am not sure if I have congratulated you on your pregnancy, Congrats! We are also expecting in August!

  • Nessa , January 24, 2009

    I really admire that you went to college and all while trying to raise your munchkin alone. I had my oldest when I was 17 and i pretty much gave up all the other hopes and dreams I had. There was no question of keeping my baby of course. I don’t regret at all having my kids young as i’ve said quite a few times. I think it gives me the strength to keep up with them now when in many ways they need me the most.The ONLY thing I regret was not sticking with an education. I’m working on that though and hopefully starting college online in the next year. I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up lol, but i know I want more time to play with grandkids when there are some.

  • blueviolet , January 24, 2009

    Parenting is an ongoing learning process, that’s for sure. The economy is killing so many of us. I can’t wait for things to turn around for all of us. The lower gas prices does help a little bit. 🙂

  • Andrea Singer , January 25, 2009

    Keep up the great work, I admire you as a mom!

  • Jennifer , January 25, 2009

    Wow!! You have done some amazing things woman! I don’t know if I could have done all that you did! Thanks for all of your encouraging words to me in my journey!Great job on this blog btw!!

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