Becoming a mother is the best feeling in the entire world—this is pretty well-known. You created life, and you love that life you created with every cell in your body. Everyone talks about the happiness and love you feel as a mother, but does anyone really talk about how you lose yourself in the title mommy?
When you first lay eyes on your bundle of joy, your world does a complete 180. It is not about you, not about your sleep, not about your wellbeing. You, as a mother, are solely responsible for the care and protection of the life you created. The days after birth are so exciting; you are so mesmerized with your baby. It is pure happiness, and then the pure exhaustion sets in because, well, you aren’t getting much sleep. Family, other than your spouse, stop caring about you (even though you just birthed or went through major surgery) and all they want to do is snuggle the baby and invade your personal space. You are no longer you, you are the one that provided a new family member and that is ALL that matters. So between the bleeding, sore boobs, messy diapers and all around learning to be a new parent (or a new parent to multiple children), you have to entertain the wants and needs of those who want to see and visit your baby. If you don’t, you’re already failing in their eyes. This is the beginning of losing yourself.
Once the excitement dies down, people stop visiting. They stop wanting to see you, and when they do, it’s awkward. Now, other than your husbands (and potentially other children’s) company, you are completely alone. Not really alone because there is a new human that depends on you for everything and anything, but alone in the sense that it feels like NO ONE knows how you feel. You question yourself and you are losing yourself. You have to find time to sleep, eat, clean, shower, work or go to school and make sure you are still taking care of everything, all while caring for a tiny dependent person. Your new name isn’t just mommy, it is now chauffeur, maid, cook, caregiver, teacher, mediator and nurse, along with countless over names. As your children grow older, their needs change, but that doesn’t make the task any less daunting.
Being a mother is an amazing title, but it’s also the hardest job on earth. It feels like you have two separate identities, and if you tip the scale two far in either direction, you will completely crumble. You forget what it’s like to be called by your real name or to not feel guilt over the simplest tasks. Being a mother is so rewarding, but it can suck the “you” out of you if you let it. Remember who you are. Remember your name isn’t just “mommy.” Remember you are loved and were loved just for being yourself, not for being a baby-making machine. You are beautiful, sore boobs and messy hair included. You are strong, and you have a purpose that is not just birthing and raising children. Most of all, remember you are never, ever alone.