You Are Not “One Size Fits All”-Motherhood Should Be No Different – Mommy Blogger

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You Are Not “One Size Fits All”-Motherhood Should Be No Different – Mommy Blogger

April 7, 2021

  • Kate I

September 15, 2012 I was blessed with the arrival of my amazing little girl. It was a moment I won’t ever forget. “She’s finally here” is all I could think. I couldn’t wait to be a mom. 

Problem was-I had NO CLUE how to be a mom. Everything that I learned about the kind of mom I wanted to be was off movies. I was raised by a single mom that worked 65 hour weeks to support us. I appreciate everything she did to provide given the circumstances. I knew that I wanted to show up differently. I unfortunately had no idea what that looked like! I remember really deeply resonated with the movie Stepmom. I loved the fun, spontaneous, friendly nature of the character played by Julia Roberts, but I also loved the nurturing, caring character played by Susan Surandon. 

I knew that I wanted to be both. The safe place but also the fun. The nurturing and the playful. But first I would have to “get through” the newborn and toddler phase. 

Being a mom is hard. I didn’t love every single season. There are moments in each season that I enjoy, but I really wanted to do fun stuff with my kids. Raising babies were some of the darkest times in my life. Why? I had no clue what I was doing and zero guidance as to what was real!

If we go back to the movie analogy-anytime there is a new mom featured with a baby-they seem to be living their best life! They never tell you about the lack of support, the loss of identity or the feeling of guilt for just wanting to have a bit of time for yourself. (I guess it probably wouldn’t make a great movie). 

When I wasn’t “enjoying every moment” of being a new mom-I felt like a horrible person. I remember when my daughter was only a week old and I got all dressed up-hair, makeup and all, to go out. I wanted to show her off and I really wanted to give off the impression that I was “just fine.” Anybody else say that? “Oh it’s ok-I’m fine!!”

It’s lonely and dark. Here’s the thing I want you to know though in case you don’t. In case you have this idea in your head about what it’s “supposed” to look like. In case you’re drowning right now and wonder how you’re getting it all so wrong. 

You’re not my dear. You’re getting it all so right. You’re trying-so hard. And you’re trying again and again. Motherhood is not a one size fits all. Raising kids is messy and they test you at the best-time of time-then you’re up against the “Karens” of the world telling you how it should be. 

Full permission to just put your blinders on. You can’t fail at a job you were made for. If I could go back and tell my 25 year old new mom self anything-it would be this:

You are allowed to set boundaries-in fact it’s necessary to thrive. Emotional, physical and mental boundaries. Surround yourself with those that make you feel good about yourself, not crappy. If someone makes you feel inferior-a) it says more about them then you B) you are allowed to not engage with them-family or not. 

You are worthy of all the help and support you desire. You don’t have to do it all. In fact I insist that you don’t. Get good at receiving-even if it makes your inner critic cringe. 

Fill your cup first. You’ve probably heard the airplane analogy waaaay too many times-so I’ll do one better. If a vase keeps tipping over again and again and pouring into everyone else, eventually it will be empty. You need to pour into it. What happens if you keep pouring into it-it overflows onto everybody else. My vase, I kept filling it. What I found out is that it wasn’t overflowing because it was in fact cracked. It was leaking out. Fix your cracks and then fill yourself again and again. You cannot help others to grow and learn if you yourself are empty. You are worthy of this and so much more. If you’re feeling burnout, snappy and unfulfilled-its a signal that your vase is empty or cracked. 

Build your own village. Again-going to the movie analogy, I just thought that people were going to show up with lasagnas and want to completely support me in my postpartum and motherhood journey. It didn’t happen like I had hoped. If there is an area you want support in, you can absolutely seek that out. I would put a doula at the top of my list along with having a friend organize a meal train. Also finding a friend, family member or babysitter that you trust to give you the breaks you so desperately need. 

I want to leave you with a question-if you get to decide what motherhood looks like for you-what is it that you want? Skys the limit. You do you my dear. 

 

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