Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Motherhood to Me

I made it through. I actually made it through childbirth.

7 weeks later and it all still seems so surreal. Not the actual labor, because believe you me that was NOT pleasant, but that I had a tiny human living in me and now she's out of me. Breathing. Living. Pooping. It's just ridiculousness.

One of the most popular questions I've come across has been "So, how is it being a mom?" And I suppose the simple answer (and the one most expect and prefer) is that "It's simply amazing and beautiful and I am in love with my life." But the fact is that for me being a mom doesn't dwindle down to just a simple answer. There's so many more emotions and truths in it, that just saying 'it's great' pulls the magic away from the whole she-bang and seems to cheapen the experience. So, I try and be truthful when people ask me any question relating to this new world of motherhood I've been thrown into.

For example, when Lillie arrived was I overcome with a seemingly unbearable tankard of love? No. All I felt was sweet relief that she was fine, that I was fine, and I was officially done being pregnant.I also remember being incredibly excited that soon I would be able to see my ankles and flip-flops every day would be a thing of the past.

And when I held her for the first time, I was in disbelief that something that large (8lb 12oz) came from me. And I felt guilty. Because from the day you exclaim to the world you're pregnant all you hear is how you'll be drowned in emotions and love for your baby the moment she is placed in your arms. Yet here I was thinking about her weight.

What I believe is my first real 'mom' moment actually belongs to another - Alfred's. When I saw him holding her for the first time, staring with so much love into that bundle of blankets that's when I knew that my life was forever changed. I literally felt my heart flutter. It was so vivid. So real. No pretenses, no lies. Simple, unadulterated love. Amazing.

And that's what being a mom has been to me so far - the moments. The good, the bad, the dirty. So, when people catch me on a bad moment I tell them "it sucks". Because when I've being overloaded with company, hopped up on pain meds from the delivery and for the first time in my life taking care of a newborn - it DOES suck. When she's been crying for the past 30 minutes and I have no clue why - in that moment it does suck. When I take her to someone for a few hours where she sleeps like an angel only to come home and refuse to go to bed - okay, well beyond that sucking that is simply just flat out annoying.

But what truly makes it all bearable - the frustrations, the sleepless nights, the realization that you have a tiny person to take care of - are all of the good. When she turns her head to the sound of my voice, when she smiles her toothless grin and it's not followed by gas, when her dad is trying to make the moves on mom and she poops like a grown man foiling his attempts - those moments are what makes it worth it.

And let's face it if we didn't have those moments to hold on to, to allow us to forget about all the bad that's stuck in between - there would be a whole lot of single child families in the world.

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