Motherhood is insane. You walk into a hospital pregnant, and walk out with a tiny human that depends entirely on you for survival. It’s terrifying. Let me preface by saying I love being a mom and all it’s ups and downs, and in between moments. I read the baby books. I joined the mom groups. I received unsolicited advice from people in check out lines at Target. But there is nothing in this world that would have prepared me for the emotional roller coaster of years to come. So if you’re expecting? Congratulations – and buckle up mama.
1. Poop. Poop everywhere.
I mean, we all know that babies do practically 3 things – eat. sleep. and poop. Okay, it’s a given. We know we’re spending thousands on diapers and wipes over the course of the years. But what you’re not prepared for? The toddler years. My first? She pooped and hid it inside of a book. Yes. A BOOK people. And my now 3 year old literally wipes his butt on my bathroom rug. Yes. Like a dog scooting his butthole around your living room floor. Exactly how you’re picturing it. You can not prepare yourself for the next level of gross that comes with kids okay?
2. Next level tired, like you’ve never experienced.
I knew I’d lose sleep. I knew I’d be tired. But this. This level of tired is unnatural. It doesn’t matter how many naps you get. You will never feel rested for the rest of your life. Do yourself a favor, buy that Costco membership and stock up on the caffeine and just administer it through an IV because you will not survive with out it.
3. You will inevitably lose yourself.
If you take anything away from this, know that at some point through this journey, you will lose yourself. I am not saying that you won’t overcome that little hiccup in the road. But one of the biggest adjustments of motherhood is one that I am still personally fighting. You go from being carefree, going out when you want. Eating, drinking, wearing, doing. All of the things you want without thinking twice about it. It’s hard to go from that lifestyle, to turning your every movement to someone else. Someone who lives totally dependent on your choices. It’s terrifying to say the least. It’s mentally draining. It’s so easy to lose yourself amongst the daily “have to’s” that you forget who you are in the process. I’m still figuring that part of my life now. I was my own person, before I became “mom”, and I am still learning, growing and changing while balancing my new role.
4. You will worry, constantly.
I never knew how much I could love someone. I never knew how afraid of losing someone I could actually be. Until motherhood. My mind never stops worrying. While Amelia is at school, I worry that she’s making friends, or that she’s receiving the attention and tools she needs for success in life while I’m not there. Max is always keeping me on my toes. We spent 4 hours in the ER this week, for a small cut under his eyelid that turned into a black eye. I was convinced he was losing an eyeball. And the entire time at the ER, I was scared to death that someone was going to think that I hurt him and take him from me. It’s a never ending battle with my brain.
5. You will feel like an inadequate mother, no matter what you do.
And there are plenty of people out there who have no problem making you feel like you’re doing a shit job. But there’s also a multitude of amazing mothers and friends who will encourage you and remind you that you’re a bad ass bitch. Surround yourself with those people, because you need that reminder. You brought life into this world. That is an AMAZING feat. We all do our best everyday. Breastfeed if you want, or don’t! Choose to cook completely organic meals from scratch, or throw that Lunchable on the table and sit down to drink a cup of coffee with that extra 15 minutes. You will feel like you’re screwing up but just know that you are absolutely not.
You will be loved harder than anyone has ever loved you before.
It’s true. I walk through the door after work and two tiny people come running to me with big smiles on their faces. Every. Single. Day. They watch out the window as I pull out the drive way in the morning. The second they hear that garage door open in the evening, they jump up. And it never gets old. These kids forgive me when I’ve not been the best mom I can be. They don’t see my everyday faults and imperfections. They are always in my corner, reminding me they’re my number one fan. Don’t get me wrong, they’re going to test your patience and you’re going to threaten to leave them at Walmart. But the second that tiny hand brushes your cheek as they fall asleep, you melt into a puddle. The second they shine when they go out into the world on their own, you realize that just maybe you did something right after all. So slow down. Take it all in. And learn to laugh. A lot.