I used to do it myself, of course.

As a young mother, I’d look at older moms and sigh, lamenting not being able to do all that they could do.

“I wish I could be like that,” I’d say to myself. “Then I could do XYZ like she does.”

I never gave a thought to the fact that the older woman I was admiring also had to put in her time, so to speak, as a young mom. She too had little ones who needed her round the clock throughout the week. She too had to wipe snotty noses and change god-awful smelly diapers. She too had to give up precious sleep to nurse infants and care for sick kiddos in the middle of the night.

But I never thought about that when I was younger.

Truth be told, there are many days that I wish I were a young mom again. Not just because I was better fit and had better stamina, but because I miss those days of having my kids close by and actually needing me for something. Or for anything.

You might think I’ve lost my mind, but I miss the noise and chaos of a house full of little kids.

A few days ago, I chatted with a young mom. She was comparing herself to me and lamenting the differences in our “accomplishments.” She felt she hadn’t much to offer while I, on the other talent had “done so much” and was “so talented.”

The problem is, she wasn’t comparing apples to apples.

What I do – writing and speaking – is more visible to the public eye than what she does. I can travel because I’m not needed at home in the same hands-on way that she is.

That doesn’t make me one iota more accomplished or talented.

To be honest, I think this young mother and others like her who are giving of themselves day and night to their kids deserve far more credit than they’re given – by others and especially by themselves. Real talent and accomplishment is saying “yes” to what God is asking of you even when it’s severely undervalued by the culture.

It isn’t easy to juggle the responsibilities of running a household, parenting children, nurturing a marriage, and in a lot of cases, a job outside the home. That takes talent and sticking with it; whether or not it’s done perfectly, it is an accomplishment.