Before children (B.C.) there is this lust for life in you like no other. You can stay up late, you can sleep in, be hungover, call out of work, go on vacations, eat sitting down, and so on. Then all of sudden, kids.
Now I’m not a huge fan of pumping up one’s own ego, but I thought I was relatively cool before having a child. People seemed to enjoy me, for the most part, and I always had a great time when I went out. Now, I just don’t go out. Going out is hard. Finding a babysitter is hard. Staying awake is hard.
But I’m still cool, right?
I have to say one of the most difficult parts of the transition to motherhood is the idea of “self.” Who am I anyway? It was hard enough to define that B.C. Now I am this totally different human being, now responsible for another human being, playing an entirely new role, but at the same time expected to be myself. Who exactly am I again?
Whoever I am, I hope I’m still cool.
After having my son, I remember going through a period I would describe as grieving. I was missing the person I was before him. I missed my freedom, my alone time, my body; the list goes on and on. At the same time, I had this indescribable bond with my brand spanking new baby. I didn’t want anyone else to help me. I wanted to be there to experience everything first hand.
After a few very LONG weeks of that, I realized there has to be some balance. I have to find that space between who I was and who I am. I knew there had to be some of ME left, but also wanted to fully accept this person, this mother, I was becoming.
Finding my new identity, or my “cool mom” self.
I found myself peeling away little by little. Taking the time to go walk the aisles of Target, while sipping the most devine iced latte. Or closing my eyes while getting a pedicure, or even just going for a drive ALONE. It was in those moments that I found myself again. It was when I allowed myself to breathe. Rebirthed and ready to take on my new life.
There is just too little out there that relates to that rawness after birth, too few reminders that you are not alone, or that you are not selfish for feeling the way you do. Becoming a mother is a beautiful and empowering transition, but it’s so important we don’t lose ourselves along the way.