In this post, I am going to attempt to capture some of the elements of mom life we may not hear much about in popular conversation. And with that, I have a disclaimer:
I am a new mommy of an almost 1-year-old, so what I write here is reflective of my personal experience over the past 11+ months. Mom life is SO complex, amazing, and intense I don’t think any mama could describe it perfectly. While much of this will reflect new motherhood compared to mommy vets with older children and/or multiples, the chances are that if you are a mom and you are reading this, you have likely experienced at least one of these things. Surely, motherhood is experienced differently by us all for an array of reasons, so by no means am I claiming that this is what mom life looks like for all mamas. Also, it is important to note that not all these things have remained constant in even our first year. This post is meant to be reflective, relatable, maybe a little funny and definitely REAL.
Mom life is:
- Wondering why no one REALLY told you about at the hard shit you would have to go through.
- Never being able to finish a cup of coffee.
- Finding a half-consumed cup of coffee from yesterday in the microwave, realizing you re-heated it and then forgot about it 30 seconds later because your attention was demanded elsewhere for the rest of the day.
- Hearing your baby crying when he isn’t actually crying (phantom cries).
- Obtaining a 6th sense! I swear I know my baby is going to cry before he actually starts crying, I know he is going to wake up right before he actually does. It’s weird.
- Really looking forward to breastfeeding and realizing it is the hardest thing to do EVER (after birth).
- Feeling isolated even though there might be people around.
- Finding out there are ongoing, heated debates over hot topics such as homebirth, circumcision and vaccinations, and that you WILL be looked at funny, verbally attacked, and otherwise judged by pretty much anyone, including other moms for your choices lest they are popular and/or conforming.
- Blood, sweat, and tears becoming a reality rather than a popular adage.
- Realizing, from a familiar stench, that you have been too busy surviving the newborn weeks that you haven’t showered in the past 2 days (ok, maybe 3 days. Embarrassing, but true).
- Only being able to clean 1 area of your house at a time and never feeling like you’re caught up!
- Feeling like a f*ckin’ superhero because you worked out, got the dogs out, cleaned some of the house, paid bills, AND managed to cook dinner, all with a baby attached.
- Never being able to go pee without company. For me, it’s either a dog, a baby, or both.
- Rarely having your hair done, make-up on, and wearing a cute outfit all at once. It’s usually one or none of those things for me!
- Wanting to go grocery shopping because it is one of the few times you can be alone for an hour.
- Fighting resentment for your husband because he is sleeping (and snoring) and you are not.
- Feeling over emotional and over touched after long days of heavy demands on your body and psyche.
- Constantly feeling hypervigilant and anxious about anything related to your baby.
- Discovering you have some impressive, cat-like reflexes!
- Daily positive reinforcement that your natural instincts are on point, which results in more confidence!
- Witnessing the most awe-inspiring development: the growth of your baby. It’s pretty awesome.
- Singing all the baby’s favorite cartoon songs to yourself.
- Finally getting out of the house alone, but after a short while feeling anxious to get back to the baby. (This one definitely passes).
- Getting to teach your baby how to do things, like (my favorite) give kisses.
- Wondering how your baby learned to dance to music, or why they find things so funny. Babies truly are a WONDER!
- Accepting that those baby gadgets and toys are now a part of your home decor.
- Knowing that everything other than your marriage is much less important now that you have a baby.
- Feeling your heart melt watching your husband play with, change, feed, or hold your baby.
- Wanting time to stop sometimes.
- An uncontrollable rollercoaster (in the beginning) that you really want to get off of, but right about the time you feel you’re at your breaking point it suddenly becomes more like a windy road on a mountain cliff, then a wider, less windy road… etc.
- A true test of patience and emotional resilience.
- The ultimate paradox, both joyful and dreadful, rewarding and exhausting.
- Learning that you are capable of so much more than you ever imagined!
I think I could go on and on about what mom life has been for me in just this one year. It is definitely not an easy job, and definitely not all bliss. For me, though, all the tough stuff does not hold a light to the amazing, happy things motherhood brings and how it has enriched my life.
I would LOVE to hear about your mom life. Please leave a comment and share your own experiences! What would be on your list?