Tuesday, November 01, 2011

honest motherhood

Motherhood is different than I was expecting.  I'm not sure what I was expecting but I just know that becoming a mother has knocked the wind out of me and I am barely getting back on my feet again.

I didn't think I would feel so emotionally raw for so long.  I still struggle with emotions and don't know what to do with them after so long.  I guess I thought I would have a few rough days or weeks and then bounce back to my normal, upbeat and crazy self.  But my normal, upbeat and crazy self has stayed in hibernation and I am left with this weepy pessimistic person who has replaced her.

I didn't expect to be who I am today.  I'm not sure if this is a "new" me or if this is just the me that is in transition.  I know I may never get back to my "old" self.  I know a lot has changed; some forever and some just for now but I am still slowly adjusting.

I still have sad days.  Days where I feel lonely and confused about life.  The highlight of my days are when my daughters smile at me and they seem to tell me, "Mama, everything's gonna be alright" and I realize that I am learning from my girls and not just them from me. 

I didn't expect to be so homesick. Holding my girls makes me think of my Grandmothers holding their babies and my mother holding my brothers and I.  I think about my mother a lot as I mother.

I think a lot about God and how He parents and Fathers us.  I wonder about Him a lot in the little things in my days... like when I pick my girls up from their naps and they have tears (real tears) in their eyes and down their cheeks because I took too long to come to them and I wonder, "Does God see our real tears, when we cry & feel like He has taken too long and feel sad like I feel sad for my girls?"  I know their napping is for their best and I am giving them what is best, even if it makes them cry... and I hear them and I know they just need to learn to go back to sleep because sleeping is what is best.  So I'm giving them what's best even when they cry and they want me to come to them.... is that like what God is doing when I cry and I wonder where He is in all of this confusion.

I think about God a lot in the moments.  My quiet times may be short and scatter-brained and sometimes I spend half of the time thinking of my laundry list of to-dos but it's the other moments of time, when I'm not necessarily sitting with a bible or a journal in my lap but holding a baby with her bottle or wiping snot from a nose or drool from that stubborn part of the chin that melts into the neck and everything from drool to lint gets caught in.  It's in those moments that I think about God and I don't have to wonder if He loves me....

I just know He does.  Even when I'm crying, sad and confused. I just know He does.


JessS said...

Hi Joanna
Thanks for sharing that post. I think most new moms are afraid to talk about how hard and emotional the first few days (weeks, months, years, decades?) of motherhood are and all anyone talks about is how blissful being a new mom is. I think if more women shared the truth about motherhood like you did in your post, a lot of us would stop feeling bad about feeling anything less than elation at our new roles as moms.

Not that its not great being a parent. But its also not always fabulous. Mostly its hard, thankless work, right? But worth it. Just know, you're not alone. You're much less alone in those emotions than you'd imagine, I believe.

Joanna Kay said...

Thanks Jess! I really appreciate your comments and encouragement. I hesitate to write my true feelings because I'm not always sure what is being "too honest" and airing my dirty laundry. Glad to know you appreciate my laundry and seems like you hang yours out from time to time too. :)
Write me anytime you want to talk. :)

Ed said...

The words are of one passing from the letting go of believing into the taking hold of the Deep Magic.

Faith is always about doing.

This is the language of one going farther up and farther in.

It feels like loss of some kind, only because the Gain is so overwhelmingly eternal.

Life is reoriented: temporal plans fall under the Light of the Eternities that you see in the eyes of your children.

Priorities do not change; they just become more clear.

Jenna said...

Just reading this now - and that's just how I felt for a long time after having my baby. Raw is a good description! But... It gets so muh better! You have new sets of fears and worries, but you find yourself again :) hope it is already fading or you!