This goes out to all the moms who didn’t grow up their whole life wanting to be a mom. This is for the moms who decided much later in life to have kids or it was a surprise. The women who laid up at night while pregnant scared of what kind of mom they would be. Despite all of that, we wouldn’t trade it for the world, but we struggle with the title sometimes.
I know this is an unpopular opinion, but maybe one some other moms share with me. I love motherhood, but I also hate it sometimes too. I never wanted to be a mom. From the moment my mother explained to me where babies came from, I declared that I would not be having kids. Don’t get me wrong, I loved children. I was a nanny for years and a camp counselor. I just did not want my own kids.
I wanted to be a travel writer. I figured kids would just tether me down and I wanted the freedom to wander the globe at my leisure. I could barely hold down a relationship, since I was always leaving on some adventure or planning on leaving on an adventure soon.
Then I met my husband. He checked all the boxes for me, especially the one where we quit our jobs and took a 7 month honeymoon from Argentina to Guatemala. He had an adventurous soul like me. I told him I was on the fence about kids and if I did want them, I would prefer to adopt.
Then something odd happened on our honeymoon. Maybe it was turning 30 or a desire to settle into one place. Who knows?! But on a long bus ride to the next town, while watching a dubbed American movie where the woman has a baby, I declared I in fact wanted a baby.
So, we returned to the states, got jobs and got pregnant. If you told my younger self that I would have two boys at ages 32 and 35, I would be in shock. But here I am: a mother. I wouldn’t change my decision or trade in this role for anything now that I am here, but there are still days I really struggle with it.
I wonder if those women who were born to be mothers feel some of these things, because they seem to always sugar coat the hard stuff. Either way here is a sort of poem about my emotions on the subject:
I love it.
And I hate it.
I love being called mama.
I hate when my toddler screams mommy for the hundredth time while I am trying to do something or talk to someone.
I love the cuddles and snuggles and kisses and hugs.
I hate the wrestling, jumping on my back, getting knocked in the mouth with a hard head.
I love the bedtime stories.
I hate being woken up at night and the cosleeping. I really hate cosleeping! Get out of my bed, I need more sleep and more space.
I love being needed to tie shoelaces, give baths, hold hands as we cross streets, and kiss owies.
I hate being needed to wipe snotty noses, hold spit out chewed up food, to clean up poop accidents on the carpet while potty training.
I love being able to breastfeed my children and calm them instantly. I love knowing they are building strong immune systems from my milk.
I hate the stress of being the only one who can feed them and sustain their life. I hate pumping at work and wearing nursing clothes 24/7. I hate my clothes being soaked in breastmilk.
I loved my pregnant body and my beautiful big belly.
I hate like literally detest my postpartum body. I cannot look at myself in the mirror without feeling sad and disgusted by my enlarged breasts and distended belly.
I love going on adventures with my kids.
I hate when adventures turn disastrous and stressful.
I love having amazing new mom friends.
I hate how my old friends who don’t have kids rarely invite me out anymore.
I love watching my kids play.
I hate playing with them (I am too tired all the time).
I love whispering I love you at bedtime.
I hate them screaming at top volume all day long. I also hate having to raise my voice after saying it calmly ten times.
I love being a mother and wouldn’t take this decision back for the world.
I hate the anxiety of worrying every second about my kids getting hurt, getting sick, experiencing how shitty life can be.