Ok, the title isn’t entirely true. Obviously I’ve showered in 7 years, but since having kids? Showering has taken on a whole new meaning.

Before children, I used to get ready for work every morning with a nice hot shower that casually woke me up and helped me start my day.

Oh good morning, steam and soap. Thank you for tantalizing my senses and making me feel like a human.

But since having children, it’s more like:

Oh good morning, steam and…“JUST A MINUTE!” yells at kids.

Then,

Why is it so cold in here? Opens eyes. Sees 2-year-old opening up the entire shower curtain with pride.

Then,

“Yes, I KNOW mommy’s naked…No, it’s NOT your turn to take off your clothes too.” Turns off shower with soap still in hair…

…because it’s just not worth it!

I’d rather skip the lather and steam and use copious amounts of dry shampoo just so I can keep my showers sacred. And because I’ve never been the kind of girl who can go to bed with a wet head and wake up with Pantene-fresh hair, I’ve resorted to showering at night and wearing hats instead.

…..sometimes while drinking coffee in the morning. (And if you don’t know what this giant green #QuietHat is, you are seriously missing out on the best part of parenting. Read my post about it so you, too, can gain control over your life.)

Back to hats.

Pre-children, hats were optional. They were a way for me to forgo curling my eyelashes and still look “pretty.” (Seriously, before kids I wouldn’t have left my house without curling my eyelashes. Bless my 20-something heart.)

But NOW? Hats are a necessity.

I wear them when I’m greasy. I wear them when I’m not. I wear them to conferences, church, school events, and everywhere except work. (I guess I draw the line somewhere.) I wear them SO often that even when I don’t wear them people don’t even know who I am!

You get the drift.

Motherhood has made me sacrifice stuff, and apparently personal hygiene has been one of them.

Sometimes I feel down about this (especially because in my 20s no one would’ve ever NOT noticed me for having hair!), but generally I’m happy about my “French bathing system.” And you know why? Because I love my kids more than my hair! (I know, shocker, right?) And since apparently vanity and sanity are mutually exclusive in my world, I’ve had to make sacrifices.

And friend, I know you’ve made them too.

Maybe it’s not morning showers (hats off to you!), but maybe it’s sleep or peace and quiet or food. (Oh WHY does breastfeeding have to be so complicated, right?! Can’t we just eat our cheese and drink our coffee and stuff our faces full of glutenous pastries AND nurse our babies?!) Not in your life, sister.

So we sacrifice. And here’s the newsflash. We don’t do it because we have to; we do it because we choose to. We’ve chosen to invite these babies into our crazy little worlds, and when we do this selflessly, we move beyond co-existence and into TRUE LOVE.

So while it might be more socially palatable for me to sit here and complain about how dowdy I look and how motherhood has made me “lose myself,” that couldn’t be further from the truth.

Because I choose to believe in a different kind of love. A love that is patient and kind. It doesn’t envy, doesn’t boast, and it isn’t proud.

It doesn’t dishonor others, it’s not self-seeking, and it’s not easily angered (except when in the shower).

It keeps no record of wrong (even when you exit the shower and find poop all over the floor), and it doesn’t rejoice about injustice but rejoices with the truth.

It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres……and it always wears hats. (1 Cor 13:4-7, JonnaMeidalVersion)

Love never fails.

But it is a choice.

And I believe that if we can shift our mindsets from why-is-this-happening-to-me?! to I’m-choosing-to-shower-at-night-and-wear-hats, we will have #momwin after #momwin after #momwin, whether we’re half asleep, three days in with no shower, or fasting cheese. You know why? Because our sacrifices matter. And we’ll be able to see that more if we focus on why we’re giving stuff up instead of what we’re losing.

So let’s own ’em, ladies. Let’s stand behind every ounce of blood, sweat, and hats so that the fruit of our labor will be far sweeter than a glass of wine in Seville. Let’s choose to wear our “hats” with pride, knowing that our sacrifices are worth more than what’s seen on the outside. Because every moment of sacrificial love you give your kids is teaching them about protection, trust, hope, and perseverance. And that, my friends, is worth more than a million showers (and hats) combined.

Jonna Meidal

Author Jonna Meidal

Jonna Meidal is a mother to three girls and wife to the funniest man on the planet. She has a master’s degree in ESL and has been an educator for almost 15 years. When she’s not teaching or with her family, she enjoys travel, food, nature, writing, and living by the fruits of the spirit. You can read more of what she’s been up to at jonnameidal.wordpress.com.

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