I remember the first time I became a mother like it happened yesterday! But in all reality it was literally almost 16 years ago. Now that I’m kiddo number 3, I recognize that motherhood is beautiful but it’s also a war zone. I kid you not, and if you have a teenager you probably know this by now. Often times motherhood can make us forget we are whole individuals before birth; so I’m going to share my tips on how to maintain YOU through motherhood.
Don’t forget your interests.
Many of us barrel right into motherhood because SURPRISE! Newborns are hard work. Between trying to breastfeed, change diapers, ,making sure baby is still breathing a gazillion times a day and trying to sneak sleep in between keeping up with chores; we can forget we once had interests outside of guessing what foreign matter is on our clothes.
It may seem impossible that we’ll ever get back to having interests outside of coupon-ing for diapers and wipes. However, I am here to assure you, it does calm down and you can find things you like to do sans the children one day!
Have a good cry.
This may seem super cliche, but in reality it’s necessary. There are going to be a lot of challenges to face as your child grows because *NEWS FLASH* you’re still a person that’s growing too. You have to juggle not only their needs, but your needs and the needs of your partner
Don’t expect perfection.
All too often we set these unrealistic mom goal expectations because we think we have to be Superwoman. However, there are going to be a lot of days that we fall short; and add more than one kid to the equation you will multiply those shortcomings times 100. And guess what? The kids will be alright, and so will you.
It’s ok to feel disappointed.
I used to have these tall dreams of having amazing kids who would make me proud 24/7. Life was going to be a series of great milestones being achieved and watching them achieve one success after another. Yea…and then I woke up.
The truth is we’ve encountered a lot of mishaps along the way for various reasons. While there were many celebratory moments; there have been a few disappointing moments. And while being disappointed in your kid is probably up there with one of the worst feelings in the world; it’s ok to feel deeply affected when your child makes a bad decision.
The first time I experienced a negative emotion in regards to a choice my child made, I felt awful. I felt like I was somehow failing at this mothering thing. It turns out I hadn’t set realistic expectations about all that motherhood would entail. Lesson learned.
You’ve done something amazing.
With all of the chaos that comes with motherhood, take a moment to revel in what you have accomplished. Your body has carried an ENTIRE HUMAN into this world. That is no easy feat. So mama, take a moment to enjoy the gift your body has allowed you to give. Revel in the joy of watching your little person grow; the good, the bad and the ugly.
Whenever you feel tempted to sell yourself short by dwelling on your inadequacies; go back to that moment when your little one was first placed in your arms.
Trust me, you will be reminded that you are doing just fine.