Motherhood has completely changed who I am at my core. From the moment I saw that positive pregnancy my life got completely turned upside down. All the emotions that flood your body in motherhood are astounding. As an emotional parent, I am the type of person who cries when I’m proud of my son or excited about something new he’s done. I cry when I see how sweet he is to his friends or when he hugs his dad really big around the neck.
I never knew how much purpose I could feel in being that little boy’s mom. I had no idea the level of pride or excitement that would come watching him take his first steps, saying his first words, and forming his first friendships.
I was a totally different person before I came a mom and I can happily say that I found exactly who I was meant to be in filling this role. Now, that’s not to say it replaced all other roles I fill in life, but it certainly started taking the lead and little by little I started putting so many things I once loved on the back burner.
Before I knew it, I was someone completely new. While there are so many things I love about this renaissance that’s taken place within me, I can’t help but feel a little sad.
Because I also lost myself here.
Motherhood is all-consuming and it is an identity all by itself. Some days I have no room to be anything else besides mom, but I’ve come to realize that I can’t let that happen. Before I was “mom” I used to be someone else. I used to have interests and dreams. I used to have hobbies. I’ve let motherhood swallow me whole and allow me to believe that filling my own cup is a far off luxury only the elite can have.
After 18 months of taking care of this little boy, I’m finally realizing that I’m allowed to be important in my own life too. I’m allowed to chase my dreams. I’m allowed to build a future. I’m allowed to take a break. I’m allowed to ask for help. I’m allowed to have some me-time. I am the type of mom who struggles really bad with FOMO. I don’t leave my child with my husband because I’m afraid I’ll miss out on having fun with them while I’m gone. It took me almost 18 months to leave him overnight and let someone else put him to bed.
My emotional attachment to my son and my time with him is a gift, but I’ve also let it become the one thing that controls my life. I’ve reached a point where I realize that I’m the master of my own happiness and it’s about time I start remembering myself a little bit more so that I can be the best version of myself for both my son and my husband, but most importantly, for myself.
Are any of you struggling with this?
I imagine I can’t be alone! Here’s to finding ways to motivate myself to get back to the things I love. I used to love Orange Theory classes or Pilates…maybe I should try that again. I love having dinner or drinks with my girlfriends. The only person standing in my way is me and I need to let myself have permission to enjoy the same things I always have so I can continue to be the happiest and most fulfilled version of myself. Motherhood is an identity, but I’ve come to learn that it’s unhealthy for me to not have any other source of identity in the world.