Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Things I Wish I Knew Before I Became a Mom...

I usually don't watch Oprah, but I was at my parent's house on Monday and my mom and I were watching it together. It was all about being a mom and a lot of it was about things you didn't before you were a know those things that people never tell you and you just kind of have to learn them on your own, but then you realize that most moms are dealing with the same things they just don't ever talk about them. So here goes....things I never knew before I was a mom and things that I struggle with about being a mom.

  • Listening to the radio will never be the same. I have not listened to the "regular" stations for any lengthy amount of time since Braden was about 6 months old. All that I have listened to are nursery rhyme CDs and kids songs. I miss the radio!

  • Breast feeding is hard.....all that you hear are the benefits of breast feeding and there are many, however it is not for everyone and you shouldn't beat yourself up if you can't or choose not to do it.

  • Your life is not your own anymore. This is not a bad thing it just takes some getting used to. Everyday all day there is another little life that depends on you and this begins from the minute you conceive. This precious gift sucks everything out of you- your energy, your body, even some of your hobbies because you just don't have the time for them anymore

  • I can't watch the news without freaking out when I hear about a child that drowned at the babysitter's house or escaped from their daycare and got ran over by a car. It hits me so hard that I just have to stop and pray for that mother because I cannot imagine a worse pain than losing your child.

  • You realize that parenting is THE hardest job on earth and you think twice before you judge the mom with the screaming kid at the grocery store. You realize that she is doing the best that she can.

  • I loved Braden before I even conceived him. I prayed for my child before I even became pregnant, but when they laid him on my chest after I gave birth he was a stranger in many ways. I carried him for 40 weeks, I had seen pictures of him in my belly, I felt his movements and I counted the many days until his arrival, but I didn't KNOW him. It is ok to feel this way, in fact I bet that if more people were honest they would admit to feeling the same way. It takes time to learn about this new little person, what they like and dislike and what makes them tick and just because you don't feel an immediate knock your socks off connection with your child does not mean that you don't love them more than anything in this world. It takes time to bond.

  • I truly believe that I suffered from a mild case of post pardom after Braden was born. At the time I didn't realize it,but looking back I can see the train wreck that I was. I have never been an overly emotional person. I don't cry over just anything, but I spent the first 3 weeks after Braden was born crying. I like to have control and for the first time in my life I felt like I had absolutely no control over anything. He didn't sleep when I needed sleep, he cried and fussed and was hungry when it wasn't his scheduled time to eat. I had small panic attacks whenever 6pm rolled around because it meant that night was coming and I didn't know what the night was going to hold: was i going to be able to sleep, was he going to scream and cry all night? When Brad went back to work my mom would come and stay with me for part of the day and I would pace the floor until she arrived and cry when she left. I would count down the hours until Brad got home. I just needed someone to be with me. When Braden would wake up in the middle of the night, after I would nurse him and rock him to sleep, I would cry because I felt so unworthy of the incredible gift that God had given me. After the first 3 weeks I felt much better and like I had somewhat of a grasp on life with a newborn.

  • The days of sleeping in on a Saturday morning are gone. If we get to sleep until 7:30 am it feels like the best thing in the world.

  • It will be LONG time before you can enjoy a dinner out at a restaurant with your child. Just in the past 3 or 4 months have we been able to take Braden to a nice sit down, order a salad and entree restaurant and been able to enjoy the WHOLE meal. It is wonderful! But just get used to take out for a while if you actually want to enjoy your meal.

  • I L-O-V-E my job. I enjoy going to work. I truly do. However, each morning that I drop Braden off at my parent's house I feel a twinge of guilt for leaving him. I'm sure that all working mothers do and I am certain that if my parents didn't watch him I could NOT leave him.

  • Forget about stopping on the way home to grab a loaf of bread. Or pick up a prescription. Or grab dinner from a restaurant that isn't drive through. UNLESS you plan on getting a sleeping child, or a 30 pound carrier or a 30 pound child from the car. All of the simple errands aren't quite so simple any more.

I am thankful to the women who have talked to me honestly about their struggles with being a mom. I have written this in the hopes that someone who is a new mom or is thinking about becoming a mom will know that whatever struggles you are going through or have encountered you are not alone. I promise you that somewhere at least one other mom has been through the same thing. And we are NOT perfect. Being a mom is A LOT of trial and error. It is ok to mess up. Your child will still love you and admitting your fears, worries, and mistakes can only help you to become a better mom.


sarah said...

Amen! Great list and great points!

I would add that you (as in all moms) judge yourself more harshly than the ones looking at you from the outside so try to relax and don't feel like you are under a microscope! That one took me a LOOONNNNNNGGGGGGG time to learn and it still creeps up occasionally.

Chassidy said...

Amen sister!

Leslie said...

I just read your list. Thank you for sharing and being honest. I took me a long to to realize how hard having Isabella actually was. I tried to be superwoman which was really stupid and exhausting. You are definitely much more relaxed with the second one even though those first 3-4 months are a very hard adjustment. Keep enjoying those 7:30 morning when you can.