I seem to keep stumbling upon mommy reality articles and posts this week that really speak to me.
Daddy Bug’s work friend forwarded this to him and he passed it along to me. Don’t Carpe Diem shares the pressure moms are put under to enjoy every single moment of having and raising their children. I identify with the author’s opinion that there are plenty of moments in parenting that just plain suck, and how someone getting in your face and saying, ‘Isn’t this great?!? Why aren’t you beaming with joy?!?’ makes you feel guilty about not feeling that way all the time. But she turns it around and gives the article a positive spin on how she really does enjoy being a mom, just in her own, realistic way. (No unicorns and hearts and rainbows.) I won’t give away the end, you really just have to read the article.
To the Mother with Only One Child was meant for me for three reasons:
1. I have only one child, currently.
2. It’s posted on the National Catholic Register, which was a happy surprise. (Not the kind of thing I’d expect on a Catholic news site).
3. Two of my mommy friends (who don’t know each other) separately shared the post on Facebook.
The author does an amazing job of explaining what it’s like being a first time mom, in the same realistic vein as “Don’t Carpe Diem”. You have to learn everything from mistakes and experience. You agonize over all the little things. You go a little crazy and wonder why motherhood isn’t the satisfying experience everyone said it would be. And there’s that ever-present feeling of guilt about everything you feel and do. And so you think to yourself, ‘How does anyone ever go on to have more than one child?’ I was comforted by the author’s opinion that it does get easier with more children, if only in the practical sense. You don’t have to learn everything new (diaper changes, nursing, making bottles, etc.) and even if it’s a little different with each child, you at least have attempted it before. Your older children want to be your helpers. You now know what can be let go, and what is absolutely necessary. The one thing doesn’t change is that it takes work to raise kids. I don’t plan on having 9 children like the author does, but she does a wonderful job of explaining the transformation of becoming a completely different person, a mom. “Dear mother, don’t worry about enjoying your life. Your life is hard; your life will be hard. That doesn’t mean you’re doing something wrong—it means you’re doing it right.”
I guess my take away from all my mommy reading this past week is that parenting and being a mom is a long, hard, process full of work. It’s exhausting and you never know if what you’re doing is right. PARENTING ISN’T FOR SISSIES! But there are moments of true happiness, laughter, and love along the way. And as my mom has shared with me, one day your children grow up into successful adults. And that is a true accomplishment.