24 Mar Dear Mom,
I see you, and you’re doing great. No really, you are.
I see you rocking your baby girl back to sleep at 4am, you’ve already been up three times overnight, and although you hug her close, I know you’re praying she goes down soon and sleeps until at least 8am. But you’re resigned to the fact – she probably won’t. Hang in there.
I see you so tired from the night before thinking there’s no way you can get through the day – but you do. You always do.
I see you feeling guilty when you turn the T.V on (again) so you can have some respite from your toddler. Don’t, we all do it. And you know what? Your son loves cuddling up on the couch with you…so is it really that bad?
I see you ‘kill it’ some days and tread water on others. Sometimes you take bubs to the playground, you get her an ice-cream, have a playdate with her buddies, go to the beach for a wander, then cook her a nutritious meal she actually eats…but…on others, you farm her out to Grandma so you have some ‘me time.’ You then make her a dinner of toast and refried beans. It’s all okay. Why? Because she loves Grandma, toast and refried beans…so just have those days…you need them and she’s okay…in fact, she’s thriving.
I see you losing your shit. Your baby won’t stop crying and you yell at him…and then proceed to just yell in general. You put him in his cot screaming so you can take a minute to reset. We all get fed up…not just you…you’re not a bad mother, you’re human.
Your child tests you…and you think, ‘I don’t know what to do here…do I hug him right now, or hold space? Do I discipline her, or just let her have the damn ice-block? Do I distract him with another toy? Do I bribe her? Threaten him with not seeing his friend tomorrow? I. DON’T. KNOW. WHAT. TO. DO!’ We’re all making it up as we go…just trust your gut.
I see you anxious about getting rid of her pacifier. She will get used to it…just take each day and night as it comes. Lean on your village.
You’re different to your sister, you’re different to your best friend, the girls from your coffee group…same goes with your baby, he’s different. You can’t compare. Your boy is toilet trained by 2.5, yet your niece is still in her diapers at 4. Who cares? Your niece eats all her broccoli and literally ASKS for peas, but your kid only eats greens if they’re disguised in a pile of meat. What does it matter? I see you doing your best…it’s all you can do.
I see you crying.
Things are different now…I get it. You can’t just get up and go for a run, or pop down to the shops at will…you have to organise, co-ordinate, negotiate and plan in order to head out the door. It hardly seems worth the effort some days…but you’ll soon get the hang of it, and your ‘new normal’ won’t be your ‘new normal’ anymore, it will just be…well, normal.
I see you worrying about finances now you’re not working. Don’t…you won’t starve, you’ll figure it out. Until then, slap it on the CC and deal with it later.
I see you panic when he trips and cuts his lip for the first time. He will be okay. There’s going to be many more injuries…get a little tougher.
Your partner loves you. They know things are different now, but they see you as the mother of their child and there’s nothing more powerful than that. Yes, there will be times when your relationship is tested, put on the back-burner and you’ll fight about stupid things because you’re both exhausted…but just remember how you got here. What led you to this chapter? Go on a date, have some sex, have a chat…then get back to you guys…you’re still ‘us,’ just with a ‘plus.’
I see you lying wide awake wondering if you’re good enough, if you’re a good mother, if you did enough today. The fact you’re even worrying about it…proves it. You’re friggin amazing.
You see a young corporate woman strutting down the street on her phone with her new handbag and you think, ‘that used to be me. I miss work.’ That’s okay. Go back to work…or just continue to miss it a bit…do whatever’s going to make your soul sing. A happy woman is a happy mom. If you don’t want and don’t need to go back to work, then just stay at home. You do you. Don’t listen to anyone who says you SHOULD be back at work, or you SHOULD be home. Do what you’ve got to do for you and yours. No one else is in your shoes…so screw ‘em.
I see you wondering if you should go to the doctor because you’re not embracing all of this as much as you thought you would. It’s okay. You will. Go.
I see you looking in the mirror at your c-section scar and wondering if your stomach will ever be the same. It won’t, and neither will you. Nothing is the same now…and thank goodness – look at your baby. Just look at her. Who cares about the damn scar and your squishy belly? No one. Own it, rock it. It’s not a scar anyway, it’s a friggin badge of honor.
I see you keeping your girl warm. I see you lovingly feeding her. I see you comforting her when she hurts herself. I see you patting your toddler’s head as you walk past him to get the laundry. I see you stealing kisses, tickling, chasing. I see you pulling the reins.
I see you learning, growing, evolving. I see you getting stronger, day-by-day.
I see you Mom…and you’re nailing it. Believe me.
Now, get up and go again because you’ve totally got this.
All my love,
Another mother. xx
Post used with permission and originated on the Cadenshae website.