Motherhood can be one of the biggest shifts to ever happen in your life. I write this post respectfully and know that no one woman is more hardworking or valued or better than another based on whether they have children or not. I know Mother’s Day can be a hard day for many women – those who have lost their mothers, those who desired, but were unable to have children, and those who have decided their family doesn’t include kids. And on a similar note – having one child, two children, or a whole starting line up – we are all moms! With that said, these are the reflections I have had recently as a working woman with a daughter about to turn four.
1. Priorities and passions can change, and it doesn’t make you less interesting. Perhaps in your pre-children life you worked for causes, joined groups, had standing dates with friends, took classes, went to the movies, read more books…. now you just want to get everyone out of the house bathed, dressed, fed and wearing two matching shoes. After years of grappling with – how did I become so boring? I’m realizing I am still the same interesting person I always was, just my day to day routines have changes.
2. Pick and choose your battles carefully, it’s going to be a long war. Do I wish I had a dollar for every time I have done or said something my pre-child self used to say I would NEVER do once I had kids? Yes, I do. I give in, I bribe, I allow… there I said it. Sometimes losing a small battle is just worth your sanity in the end. My daughter will be fine, she’ll be able to work on all of it with her shrink in her twenties.
3. Santa may be watching them, but they are watching you. One of the worst feelings of motherhood is seeing your most terrible habits being mimicked by a tiny person that you have been entrusted to raise. Just last night, my daughter muttered, “Damn it,” when she was frustrated by something. Great. Move over Betty Draper. I’m available to collect my Mother of the Year Award anytime this week.
2. There’s a time and place to sweat the small stuff and it isn’t very often. My house doesn’t always look perfect and most days I am just happy we all survived. I smiled sweetly this week as my daughter “helped” me make my bed, by pulling up the blankets and smoothing them out (exactly the way she watches me do it.) The bed looked a mess, but her proud, beaming with pride face is way more important than a perfectly placed throw pillow.
1. It’s their world, you’re just living in it. I can pretend that my husband and I are running the show, but we aren’t. I used to try to convince myself we were, but it was a very freeing feeling when I finally admitted the truth. I was not up for another 14+ years of anxiety, so instead I am just living in this world right now. And for the most part, it’s not so bad!
Happy Mother’s Day to all the women out there celebrating today!