It wasn’t until I had my own child that I truly understood so much of what I had observed from other moms, or even at times, judged. I was the last of my three sisters to start my family, and conveniently enough the most outspoken of the bunch. Yep, it’s gotten me in trouble a time or two. So, naturally, when I’d see them looking less than clean as a result of no shower, in yoga pants I’d seen them sporting the previous two times we’d gotten together, and God-forbid, no makeup, I’d be like UMM MAYBE YOU COULD’VE BARELY TRIED TODAY (I know, the today me hates the old me, too, it’s okay). I was pretty confident babies were always as cute as they looked, life was filled with cuddles and nothing else, and how could you ever not be on cloud 9… I mean, bad days don’t exist when you have this tiny thing you can hold all day that you created, right?
Then one day I went shopping with one of my sisters. (Unbeknownst to either one of us at the time, I was pregnant.) So, since I had no kids of my own, I was obviously very knowledgeable on all things motherhood, and when her son pooped legitimately everywhere, everywhere as in the diaper failed miserably at doing its job, and she didn’t have a change of clothes for him, I was mentally thinking how on Earth does she not have a change of clothes for gosh sake, this is way too inconvenient for me. Sure, we laughed, poop jokes are never not funny. But she was so tired, and as we strolled around the store with her kid in nothing but a diaper, I unintentionally showed zero bits of grace. I think back on all of the many times I witnessed my sisters in similar situations, and I cringe a little at how I did, or didn’t, react.
Almost 10 months ago (I’m typing this, but you should know I’m in extreme denial he’s almost a year old), we brought our son into the world. Let’s pause for a second and refer back to paragraph one. To carry and then birth a baby is to deserve all of the yoga-pants-and-messy-bun days you want. All of them. And in 10, short months, I’ve learned that when you haven’t had quality sleep for an extended period of time, you forget things. Pacifiers, blankets, hats, diapers, extra clothes, etc., and I’ve come to learn that this is life as a mom sometimes. But, sometimes you forget who you are, too. Bear with me- this isn’t supposed to get depressing.
Before I had Ashton, I was young, madly in love, and my biggest concern was paying bills and trying to further my career. Getting ready in the morning, making sure I had freshly shaven legs and painted toenails every day in the spring and summer, a house that resembled perfectly put away everything, and a healthy diet were among my daily struggles. I was a nightmare to be within 15 feet of if I didn’t get my beloved 8 hours of sleep a night- the more the merrier. Today, I wake up after a night of broken and interrupted sleep, to try and get a shower before the baby wakes up (at 6:30am), to get both of us presentable, out the door (with his entire life in tow), and to work… all by 8am. Oh, I haven’t had my toes done since prior to going into labor, we can all laugh at this. It’s okay. Then I sit behind my desk all day and in the middle of trying to actually be productive, I yawn often and at the very least make constant eye contact with those I’m speaking with so that it looks like I didn’t just have the most stressful morning of my life 5 minutes prior. Eye contact through my glasses of course, because though I do need them, their primary purpose is to hide my mom bags. Then, I get home and it’s feed the baby, change the baby, make dinner, clean up from dinner, straighten the house (LOL), feed the baby again, put the baby to bed, get some sleep (LOL) and repeat. All of the new things added to my day, though exhausting, I wouldn’t trade for the world. If endless nights of crappy sleep is the worst we have going for us, we are doing pretty good. I wouldn’t trade the sweet laughs I hear, or the squeals of sheer excitement when I get home from work, for a night of sleep anyways.
If you’re a stay a home mom, I’m talking to you, too. The point is, when you become a mom, you yourself go further down the list of your own priorities. It’s easy to do, and really it’s pretty unavoidable, but have you ever heard the saying “you can’t pour from an empty cup?” I mean with that, this blog post is probably the loudest I’ve ever preached to myself. When I started this business, I wasn’t a mom. I knew I wanted that for my life someday, but my connection was with couples. I had just married the love of my life, and that was the stage of life that I had experienced my most joy. So, that’s where I started, and what I grew to love and find passion. In my short, 10 month journey of motherhood, I’ve also found a passion here. In my own quest to refill my ‘cup’ often to be the best version of myself to those that need me, I’ve learned that it’s okay to take time for me.
I get it, we all have our own preferred refill method. But if there’s one thing I know we all share, it’s the understanding that the days may be long, but the years are so, so short. This Mother’s Day, the dresses are on me. Come and let yourself feel beautiful, and make memories with your babies that you can cherish forever. You deserve it.
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