Let me start off with this– I know my chosen path in life is not what some would deem desirable, but I’ve always wanted to be a stay-at-home mom. It may not be glamorous, a monetary rewarding job, or the easiest at times, but it’s the path I’ve chosen to take. I saw the impact my mom had staying home with us kids (five of us). I liked the interaction we had with her compared to some of the other kids I grew up around. I’m lucky that after graduating college, I was able to have kids and stay home. I understand there aren’t many that have the luxury. I would hope that my blog helps many see that staying home isn’t easy. We don’t just sit around like Peggy Bundy. There are many things to do and when there is “down time” it is extremely appreciated.
I became a mom at an older age than most of my friends. I grew up in Detroit and it is a common thing for there to be younger mothers than myself. I was aged 26 when I had my first son, and boy I did NOT know what to expect. The idea of becoming a mother was wonderful and exciting. No one informed me of pregnancy, child birth, or a great many things that motherhood contained but I was ready. I did a lot of reading to educated myself on subjects, but what is literature compared to the actual experiences of another woman? I admit I was kind of disappointed that certain things were not explained but I vowed to myself if ever i have my own daughter, I will inform her. The one thing that I feel will be important to explain are the major changes your body goes through. Not every one bounces back to “normal” sizes after and not many are stretch mark free. It is possible to lose the baby weight and it may take longer than usual, but it is a discouraging and difficult path when you are unaware of the trials of motherhood and have a lack of supportive network around you. I feel that once you are able to accept this major change with yourself than every thing that follows after is minor.
It amazed me with how much energy it takes from you. Motherhood uses every bit of energy you have. The physical, the mental, the emotional…every thing! It truly is a 24/7 “job” and you can never put it down. I would have never thought that I could worry so much about one human being, and now I have three beings to worry about…but it is definitely worth it when all of the hard work as a mom pays off. I do think it gets easier with each child. You do learn from previous experience. You also have what I like to call a “life phase change” in friends. (These are the new friends you make, or renew because they are at the same phase in life you are. Good-bye party friends, single friends–well, most any ways). You have their advice and if you’re lucky, some of them have older kids to alert you of what’s next. I am absolutely grateful to the other parents that confirm their child is just as rambunctious, sneaky, or silly. I’m not losing my mind after the laughs another mother has to share. And yes, it is okay to want to scream some times, or need to get away.
If some one would have told me my college days were not the sleep-deprived, physically, mentally challenged days of my life I would have given them the dirtiest look ever! They would be right. I cannot believe how drained I am. I do have toddlers and a newborn, but still. I’m young (in my opinion) and I should have the energy to keep up. Not so! I workout a lot for my health, my sanity, and my overall well-being. It is not enough. Some days I need to sneak a nap. Thankfully, my husband is the hands-on father and spouse. He helps a great lot when he is home. Even at that, there is so much to do some times. Some days are neater than others. Some days are calm, the kids are in good moods, the baby sleeps well and meals are a snap. Then there are those days when the kids are chaotic, bouncing off of the walls, and the baby will not leave my arms for any thing and I feel like I will never get them fed. I even forget to eat some times. Aye! Those days, my night cap is usually wine and a movie. A great thing I encourage other moms to indulge. If that is not your forte then find an outlet, we all need one. I often wonder what the mom in Family Circus might have done once the kids were asleep.
I do not want to sound like a nut cracker when it comes to motherhood. There are many wonderful things to cherish in parenting. I would keep having babies if I could just to repeat the first moment I get to see my baby. I am on my third child and I thoroughly enjoy having a baby MUCH more than before. The first child was a guessing game and chalked full of surprises. The second child was hoping he was not a colic baby like my first. He was easy and is very passive. Now, my current youngest is laid-back and I just enjoy every minute even the crying! I know what to expect, I no longer worry about colic because I have been through it, and I have a stable support system around me. Plenty of mother friends, ample female family members, and most importantly, a husband that is present in every way. What more could I ask for?