Tuesday, October 22, 2013

It is going to be ok.

I think motherhood has always been hard. As long as women have had babies it has come with challenges. I think some things never change, but I also think the modern mom has a whole new set of problems. It has been talked about before that with social media the way it is, comparing yourself to others, and seeing everyone as only having perfectly happy moments can be hard. For me, instagram is a happy place. I love seeing what people are doing, wearing, sharing, and connecting with people I otherwise wouldn't have. I do however, struggle at times with how trendy motherhood has become. Its cool to have a baby. And while this is awesome because it opens up a new world of support for moms, it complicates things as well. Because having a baby isn't as cool itself, but rocking the mom gig, loving it despite its challenges, and looking awesome while you do it, is cool. Writing about how motherhood is -hard and crazy and emotional and stressful and wonderful and amazing and messy and the best, most rewarding thing you have ever done- is cool. And that is hard sometimes. It is hard because when I don't feel that way, I feel like I am broken, or missing something.

After my first baby I was hit hard with postpartum depression. It took over a year to work through and I still see it as the darkest time of my life. I wasn't warned. I didn't anticipate it, and from the moment I met my little boy I felt like I was missing something. It wasn't bliss. I wasn't overcome with joy. And from there is only got so, so much worse. But I made it through and eventually felt back to myself.

Baby round two. The main reason I decided to go as natural as possible in delivery this time is that I felt like I needed the crazy adrenaline/endorphin rush people talk about after giving birth. It totally worked. I immediately felt so much joy, love, happiness, and connection with that baby.The happiness continued for weeks. I was so in love with my kids, with this baby, and with my experience I was having. I will forever be grateful for getting to experience those feelings.

Since then things have gotten hard again. So hard that we have thought that we might not have any more kids just because of what is does to me. I don't feel like sharing specifics but the level of craziness blows my mind at times. But unlike the first time around this time I am being more open about it, and getting the help I need. I know very few, if any, will even read this. But I share for one reason only, because if there is even one other person who reads this, feels the same way, and realizes they aren't alone and there's nothing "wrong" with them, then it was worth it to me. 

We all have to be our own kind of mom. It is a unique experience that really does change you forever. A hard phase doesn't define you. It is just a hard time. You have to find how YOU do things, what makes YOU happy as a mom, and what YOU need to do to be ok. For some it could be wearing heels to the park to make them feel better, or posting a selfie to get some validation from others, or throwing extravagant birthday parties because they love to do it, or having a Netflix hour for the kids for your sanity and serving cookies for breakfast to get a few extra minutes in bed... we are all different and all in this struggle together. Throw away the judgement not only of others but of YOURSELF. Do your best and forget the rest. We are all going to be ok. 


  1. I can relate to this so much. Oh man, when I was younger I thought I would have at least as many kids as my parents had and hopefully more. After just one I don't think I could handle more. The first two weeks after I was crying every day at the same time. Breastfeeding was painful up until he was weaned. It just isn't as glorious as some people portray. I had issues before Ruben and the combination of hormones and erratic sleep just magnified them. I think one of the hardest things was having to ask for help, it made me feel so selfish. I did my best to take care of my needs first but even figuring out what needs those were was challenging. It's frustrating to have to take a timeout from each other for a few minutes so you can all calm down.

    It's hard to be judged because of your choices. In my family if you don't have at least three kids there's something wrong with you. It's pretty alienating, especially when I see family members sacrificing their physical and mental health just because they feel pressure to have a bunch of kids. But then again, I shouldn't judge them either.

    It's also frustrating to read blogs or articles that portray the difficulties of parenthood but with an attitude to just "suck it up". It's like, I would love to just get over the cravenness, tell me your secret please. Yes, I can just be ok with being climbed on for hours while trying to do homework/find a job. Oh wait, no I can't. So then I let him get away with stuff (watching a bunch of tv, climbing on the couch, coloring on non paper things) and then feel guilty because I'm not paying enough attention but I don't want to fail my class/I need a good job...Oh boy.

    Keep up with getting help, don't let people's judgement get to you. A lot of the things you list are the reasons I don't read mommy blogs other than ones from my friends and don't go on any forums with other parents. I still go online for specific advice on things like potty training or sleeping. But I take the advice I think will help Ruben the most. I don't think any one parenting philosophy works for everyone and even if it does work on you kid, it won't all the time. Well this was way more than I intended to post. Good luck with everything. You are always free to message me, even if you just want to vent.

  2. Thank you for sharing! I think this is a message worth sharing over and over. Although I didn't have postpartum depression, I certainly struggled transitioning from pregnancy into new "mom-hood." I criticized everything I did and consistently fought to ensure that my child wasn't being raised the wrong way (whatever that meant exactly.) Overtime I have developed a new mantra for my motherhood, which is that so long as I am trying my best and I truly love my child, he is going to turn out okay. It helps me continue to try my best without berating myself over every small mishap or messy thing that happens.

  3. Oh my heck - your last paragraph - almost made me cry! I have done all of those things -- and more. I hope you know it's not just you too! Thanks for keeping it real!