Most women say becoming a mother is the best thing that has ever happened to them. It’s a selfless job that tests your sanity and emotional well-being on a daily basis but the rewards are too great to count. A higher being has decided to entrust you with the life of another tiny human and this adorable little creature will encompass your life and bring you to new levels of emotion and anxiety you never thought existed prior to this journey.
Before I had children I was fun. I stayed up all night long, partied, had lots of friends and hobbies. I got up everyday, showered, got dressed in a nice outfit and never left the house without my makeup. I was cool. Fast forward 5 years and I am now a married stay-at-home mom of three. And I definitely wouldn’t describe myself as fun or cool. Mostly because I really have no life other than my children and the four walls of my home. I don’t go out very much. I often look like a hot mess and my wardrobe consists of mostly yoga pants or comfy clothes, some of which have stains on them thanks to my children. My brain is officially mush from spending day in and day out with 3 children under the age of 5 and watching hours of cartoons everyday. My relaxing outlet everyday is my morning cup of coffee which often turns cold before I finish it since I’m constantly getting up to tend to the kids or house.
“I am no longer selfish because I can’t be”
Some days I don’t recognize myself anymore. The truth is, I am still the same girl just a different version of her. I changed when I became a mother. I am no longer selfish because I can’t be. I have to care for these ones that rely on me for everything and it’s the most demanding job of my life. I no longer have time to iron my hair out and spend 20 minutes applying liquid eyeliner. My main concern shifted from how stylish my clothes were to how much spit-up was acceptable to leave on my shirt in public before I was forced to change.
Don’t get me wrong, I love my role as a mother but it can be hard and it took time to adjust to at first. I didn’t feel like myself and I certainly didn’t look like myself. It was hard meshing my old life with my new one. Making it harder was that I was fresh out of college and most of my friends didn’t have children yet. I was faced with seeing the pictures their life and couldn’t help but feel a little left out.
For almost 5 years now, I’ve put myself on the back burner and put my all into motherhood, which admittedly is probably not the best thing to do. There needs to be a healthy balance between motherhood and your own identity.
Having a new baby now, I know things will probably get worse before they get better for the next few months. I’m making a conscious decision to put forth some extra effort to focus on myself now that Ben is here and I’m most likely done having babies.
It may be something small like painting my nails or finally buying myself a new pair of jeans, or maybe I’ll do something really crazy and join a yoga class. Either way it will be something just for me.
Someday my children grow older and get identities and lives of their own. They won’t need me as much and I’ll find myself with more free time than I’ve had in years. I’ll have plenty of time for hobbies, friends and lunch dates. I won’t have anyone dictating what I watch or keeping me up all night. I’ll forget all the lyrics of the Disney songs I’ve come to memorize. Of course by that point I’ll be complaining about how I miss them needing me and how I would trade all the free time in the world for 3 screaming, messy babies who just want to hang on me and rub their boogers on my new shirt.