I was doing a little blog hopping this afternoon and came across this one post by Loving Earth Mama about the 10 things she thought she knew about motherhood. Her post got me thinking about the things I thought I had figured out before I became a mom. My frame of mind pre-baby:
- Motherhood would be a snap! I nannied for years and I was totally ready for kids. I knew all I needed to know about being a mom from my nannying experiences.
- I wouldn’t be one of those moms who “freak out” at their kids in the supermarket.
- Moms who let their baby “cry it out” were just plan WRONG! I wasn’t going to be like that.
- I can do it all, be a mom, have a career, and still be a social butterfly.
- My relationship with husband would stay the same. We’ve been through it all and nothing could pose a challenge for us.
- Breastfeeding would be easy as pie. I didn’t get why some women had such a hard time.
- I would never be one of those moms who left their needs by the wayside. I’d always make sure that baby and I were always presentable.
- I’d still be able to get plenty of rest after baby came and all those nay sayers who keep telling me to “rest now, you won’t get to once baby comes along” don’t know me what I’m capable of.
- I can handle anything that comes my way and I didn’t need anyone’s help.
- My life would stay the same, just with a baby.
My frame of mind post baby:
- I don’t know jack squat! All of a sudden I’m responsible for the life of this little person. And being a mom is a full-time gig, there’s no breaks and no real-time outs for mom. Yes, I had plenty of experience with children but they were never my children and that changes the scope on everything. You follow other people’s rules when it comes to nannying, but you have to come up with the game plan when you’re a parent. If you screw up, it’s on you baby! When it comes to motherhood and parenting, I’m learning as I go. I now understand why my parents always said I was their “guinea pig”. It’s a learning process and unfortunately, the first child is usually the one parents experiment on. To my baby, I have to say: Sorry honey, I’m trying my best!
- Although I love my child with all my heart, sometimes I just lose it and sometimes in the most embarrassing places. You can’t help it when you’re just at your wit’s end and your child does something that just breaks the camel’s back. I would never lay a hand on my child, but I can be a little harsh with my words and lose my temper. I don’t mean to and I don’t do it intentionally, but you mother’s out there know what I’m talking about. Sometimes you simply can’t help it!
- I tried at the beginning to not let my baby cry it out and would rush to her crib or bassinet the instant she made a peep. I’m not saying that my daughter is a cry baby now, but I’ve learned my lesson that letting them cry it out is a good thing. Teaches them to self sooth and, later on it teaches them that they can’t have everything they want. This is a good technique and it will most definitely be used the next time around.
- I can’t do it all, not all the time. Sometimes I can do a lot, but something always falls through the cracks. I’m not super mom and I’ve learned to accept that. It doesn’t mean, though, that I’ve thrown in the towel and have accepted defeat. I’m still striving to do my best at everything, but I’ve learned to accept that sometimes, not everything will get done and get over it.
- Although my husband and I love each other very much, having a child has put a bit of a strain in our relationship. It’s not my daughter’s fault by any means, but making time for us has been more difficult. It’s a work in progress and it’s something that needs to be worked at. Keeping that spark in the relationship is something that you’ll have to put effort into and more time for. Don’t just let your relationship fall to the way side and think you can pick things back up at a later time when the kids are older. This is something we’re still working on and will continue to work on for the rest of our lives.
- Some women have it easy when it comes to breast-feeding and some just don’t! I was one of the one’s who didn’t. It took time and practice and lots of help. One of the nurses had me a the brink of giving up and thankfully I was strong enough to tell her to leave. Thankfully, the next nurse to come help me was much more patient and can help me learn. It wasn’t easy, but with time and practice I was able to get the hang of it.
- Finding time to do my hair, makeup and sometimes even getting out of my pj’s at the beginning was sometime near impossible! Even two years later, I sometimes struggle to get myself properly dress. I now understand why moms put their needs aside, because the need of their child and their family will always come before their own. I willingly put my family’s needs far above my own and sometimes fulfilling these needs means I just don’t have the time to take care of myself.
- I’m so sorry for doubting anyone who told me to rest while I could, I was just plain old WRONG when it came to this!
- When it comes to motherhood, I’m pretty much clueless and am learning things as I go. I’ve learned to rely on fellow moms for advice and support. After my daughter was born I found out how little I truly knew about what it takes to be a good mom. It was hard to ask at the beginning, but now I welcome it so if you have advice to share, please do!
- My life has changed in so many ways it’s hard to keep track. My old life, though it was only a little over 2 years ago, seems more like a distant memory. There’s no more staying out late, coming and going when I please, etc. Now things need to be planned out because just getting out the door is an hour ordeal.
Motherhood has changed my life in more ways that I ever imagined. It’s opened my eyes and made me realize that there’s still so much for me to learn and figure out. I don’t have the answers to everything and when it comes to raising a child, I’ll take all the help I can get. Becoming a mom has been the greatest blessing of my life and I am so lucky to have such a wonderful, spunky and outgoing little girl. She has taught me to be more humble and I’m grateful for every moment and experience I get to share with her. My life is definitely more enriched and fulfilled with her in it.