My husband and I were 19 years old when we actually DECIDED to start a family. We had absolutely no idea what we were in for and we thought we were ready.
It’s hard to be prepared for a child. You can be prepared financially (we weren’t) or maybe emotionally (we were to a certain extent), but you can never truly be ready for the way a child changes every aspect of your life until you have one.
Your heart changes the moment you meet your child and the love that develops is so deep and unconditional. If they hurt, you hurt. When they smile, you smile. I was surprised at the connection I felt the moment Dalton was born. I was responsible to keep him alive and safe, to make sure he was loved and taken care of. The responsibility that was added to my plate increased ten-fold.
You stop thinking just about your needs and have to make room for theirs. Am I hungry? They must be too. Diaper changes, feedings, making breakfast, lunch and dinner, educational play and learning times, bed time, baths, naps, cleaning up messes, laundry…. the list goes on.
My day is timed around my children. I don’t get to sleep, eat, workout or shower when I want. Annnddd the more kids you have (depending on their ages) the less time you have for yourself. When it was just Dalton and I, I could workout, cook, shower, clean, and do all that I needed to do while he napped or played. This wasn’t always the case when he was a newborn, but the older they get the more independent they are. Now I have a newborn and a toddler. I try to workout when Dalton is playing and when Ellie takes her first nap. When Dalton naps I try to clean and cook, if Ellie is awake I can let her hang out in the rock n play or in the baby carrier (I have like 3 all for different uses). When they both nap I have to decide between taking a moment for myself or getting things done.
My husband knows that I’m jealous of him. He gets to leave the house – a break from being a parent that I don’t get. Obviously at work he has responsibilities that I’m very glad I don’t have buttttt…. He can take showers when he wants, long trips to the bathroom, he doesn’t have to feed Ellie, etc. This is what you take on when you breastfeed. I absolutely LOVE breastfeeding and a small sacrifice I am willing to pay is that I have a tiny human that can’t go longer than an hour or three without my boobs. Yes I can pump and leave some milk but then your boobs fill up and you have to pump again, etc. I also have to wake up during the night when she’s hungry and I have to stay awake until she falls asleep.
Trips to the store become more difficult, just leaving the house takes longer. You have to get ready and get your babies ready too. If someone poops, it needs to be changed ASAP. If you need to run an errand or have something planned, you try to work around nap time and bed time. They must be with you at all times unless you can trust someone else to watch them for you.
You might be thinking that the purpose of this post is to complain. It isn’t. I am blessed to be able to stay home. I don’t miss a moment of their lives and I believe that this is my calling. I just want everyone who reads this to either find comfort because their lives look a little like mine or some insight into what changes to better set expectations.
Yes everything changes. You aren’t as free as you used to be and this is something I didn’t come to terms with until I was holding a positive pregnancy test in my hands. Looking back, I wouldn’t change a thing. A door was opened to me when I became a mom. I learned to be more patient, selfless, forgiving, and loving. I felt my heart transform to hold love for two humans I grew inside my body (pregnancy and birth are miracles). Time, the 24 hours I am given each day, became about more than just me and now I use it wiser. I cherish each moment I am given and I look for ways to improve for more than just myself, but for my kids. Am I fueling my body and my mind in positive ways that make me a better mom?
To each and every mom, working or working at home, I respect you. I am still learning what it means to be a mom with each new stage Dalton (the guinea pig child) reaches. What a paradox… as your child gets older you find yourself having to learn and adjust.
A mom isn’t made overnight, she is constantly fashioned to become the person her child needs.
Stay tuned because we have a BIG project in the works…❤️