Oh Motherhood. It’s a magical place where my near 7 month old son melodically laughs and plays in his clean and freshly ironed clothes all on his own while I whip up a culinary masterpiece in our immaculate home, just waiting for my husband to come home so we can enjoy a nice and quiet evening of quality, family time. Right?! Wrong. So, so wrong. It’s 10:30 AM now and I am in my PJ’s, furiously (but conspicuously) typing away while my son naps in his pajamas called “Sleep n’ Plays” (more like sleep and wear right until we leave the house). I’m wondering what I can make for lunch in less than 20 minutes, which is the amount of time I have while Russell is awake to do anything before he gets fussy, and trying to mentally prioritize the 53490892 things that needed to get done yesterday. We spend our days attempting to do something productive until Ricky gets home, when I hand Russ off and dash out the door with the intensity of a running back headed to the end zone. Freedom is the end zone. Sometimes I just retreat to a corner to Instagram in private. Again, FREEDOM is the goal. Not exactly what I pictured when I was pregnant and thinking of my life to come, but it’s my reality. Here are a few other motherhood tales that weren’t exactly true for me…
- You’ll Know Exactly What to Do!– This was the go-to, reassuring phrase I heard all throughout my pregnancy from almost everyone to encourage me that I would be a great mother. “You’ll be fine!” they all said. If by fine, you mean alive then yes! We’re fine! I mean in the end, that’s what really counts, right? Truthfully, I definitely did not know exactly what to do every time. In the beginning, Russell would cry and I would cry right with him. I’m not sure why people think once you have a baby, the power to be the World’s Best Mom is transferred to you. In actuality you become an expert at figuring things out. Motherhood is a learning process and you’ll learn as you go along. You won’t know exactly what to do but you’ll figure it out. And if you don’t, we live in 2015 with this amazing tool called the internet. (Just don’t look things up too much, or you’ll go crazy. There’s a science to it.)
- Breastfeeding helps you drop your weight so quickly that you’ll go back to yourself in no time! — Uhm. Yeah. This one. Sigh. Let me just preface this by saying I am extremely self-conscious. I care a great deal (sometimes TOO much!) about the way I look. I did not gain a lot of weight during this pregnancy because I was crazy sick in the beginning and lost close to 30 pounds. After having Russ, I dropped the weight fairly quickly (so that part is true!) but the weight redistributes itself differently than before. Although the number on the scale is the same, I look different. Before pregnancy, I barely had to work on my body and I was satisfied! Now? Moment of silence for my pre-pregnancy body that I never truly appreciated. You. Are. Missed. I apologize for taking you for granted. *sniff, sniff*
- Being a stay-at-home Mother is the dream job! — Not sure whose dream consisted of cleaning and cooking and listening to Old MacDonald endlessly for hours but it wasn’t mine. I am extremely grateful for the opportunity I have to stay home with Russell and I don’t take it for granted. I know plenty of women who would LOVE to stay home with their children but they simply cannot afford it so I know that this truly is a gift from God. But can I just be real for a minute? I felt like I was losing a part of myself in staying home. I was so used to running around for work and for church that working inside the home was foreign. It can sometimes feel like my days consist of making sure my husband and my son are happy. I combat this one by resting in God’s will and finding other ways to occupy my brain (like reading and writing!)
Motherhood is a GIFT. The most magical part is looking at my son and knowing that he is a complete miracle sent by God. I remember looking at my Mom as I was growing up like a super-hero. To me, she did EVERYTHING! Once I had Russell and saw truly how difficult it was I asked her how did she do it all and made it look easy?? She gave me the greatest reassurance in saying she didn’t. She actually told me that I amaze her because I grasped motherhood so well and quickly. Mamas, we are our worst critics. The greatest advice I could give to Moms besides trust God is DON’T COMPARE. Everyone’s experience is different because every child is different. These 3 were the biggest myths for ME but to others, they might all ring true and guess what? That’s OK! I hope this helps someone out there and trust: you are the BEST Mom for your kids! Comment below with some of your greatest myths!
P.S. For more AMAZING images and information on booking by Dragonfly Photography, visit her website at http://www.thedragonflyphoto.com. (And see the next blog for more pictures of Russell 🙂 )