Motherhood and The Things No One Tells You

Happy Monday, It has been a minute since I’ve blogged. Life has been hectic. Balancing my new role as a mom while still being present in my marriage, participating in community affairs, and working full-time has been quite the task. Some of you may be thinking that’s nothing while others may say that’s too much to manage. If you are reading this and you are saying to yourself “at least you have a husband, I am a single parent of multiple kids” or if you are saying to yourself ” you should be happy you have a child because some women are dealing infertility” then this excerpt is not for you. I am not here to compare my story with others nor am I here to ask for an award for being the hardest working mother of the year. I am simply using my voice to provoke the thoughts of women everywhere and start a discussion about motherhood and the added societal pressures placed upon women, especially in their postpartum journey. So, if you are down with that then please continue your reading, if not thanks for visiting my blog anyway!

Let’s get to it, shall we? As a new mom of a four-month-old, life as I know it has been a beautiful mess. More recently, my maternity leave has ended and I have returned to work. After three months of bonding and getting to know my baby girl I had to entrust her in the hands of a local childcare center. While it is equipped with all the bells and whistles, it doesn’t make my nine-hour day away from her any easier. On top of the transition back to work, as of late I have been fixated on getting back to my pre-pregnancy weight. Not to mention I’ve been struggling to find time to be social, I’ve been in no rush to step back out on the social scene. It wasn’t until today, that I had to stop and ask myself why do I feel the pressure to do what is considered the norm?
girl-2480361_1920To all of the new moms, moms-to-be, and moms who have been doing this for a while, it is time to give yourself some grace! Raising children isn’t an easy task. Think about it you have the whole life of another human in your hands, sheesh that sounds intense! It doesn’t matter if you are back to your pre-pregnancy weight or recently stopped breastfeeding and switched to formula. It doesn’t matter if you are married versus being a single mother. It doesn’t even matter if you’ve birthed your children or went through adoption. What you do, what we do as mothers is astounding. We shouldn’t succumb to the pressures of society. Today I am here to tell you it is okay to pace yourself. Being a mother isn’t an easy task, but it is a rewarding one.

I’ve learned that there are so many things we don’t talk about concerning motherhood. We seem to highlight the beautiful moments but what about the ugly ones? What about sharing how exhausting being a new mom can be and encouraging women to not overload their plates especially when returning to work. We often see in the media this portrayal of “super mom” a mom juggling a million and one things but forget to promote her taking care of herself. Working yourself into a frenzy isn’t good, so live life at your own pace not the pace of another mother. There’s also a huge emphasis on the “bounce back body”. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen women drinking magic teas and wearing waist trainers to expedite their postpartum weight loss, when we should be encouraged to take our time. Trust me I was obsessing over my post-baby weight loss, too. I was looking into waist trainers, teas, you name it and finally, I reached a point of compassion for myself and so should you.

So, tonight I am going to have a cup of my favorite Ben and Jerry’s milk and cookies ice cream and give in to the new Disney streaming site all while breastfeeding my baby and living my best life. This postpartum body will get back to its former glory days, so what’s the rush? I don’t know what it is that gives you joy but relax a little, take off your bra when you get home and let the girls breathe or snatch that wig and enjoy a glass I mean a bottle of wine and while you are doing that, know I am rooting for you, mama!

A Letter to Adele Marie

Since my last post, there have been a few major changes in my life. As you know toward the end of last year I lost my grandfather and the beginning of this year I lost my great grandmother. When I began this blog I was diagnosed with severe anxiety and used this platform as an avenue to share my story with the hope of helping others. Little did I know this blog would open doors for me to help others dealing with mental illness. I said all that to say that after my last excerpt  “The Essence of Time” I have some exciting news to announce to my readers.

_MG_6046 (2)On July 14th my husband and I welcomed a beautiful baby girl into the world. She came at the perfect time in my life, just when I was beginning to wonder what exactly my purpose in life was. For the past three years, since being diagnosed with anxiety, I’ve had my share of lows. When I found out I was expecting I was mixed with emotions, it came so unexpectedly that I didn’t think with all the trauma I went through that I’d be fit to be a mother.

In short, October 2015 started an emotional spiral for me after burying four friends from a tragic car accident, then months later burying a close aunt, from there a grandfather and shortly after that a friend that took her life by suicide. Going through all those things I wasn’t sure how I’d cope. In addition to all the loss, there were other casualties I experienced. My faith was tested and after months of panic, I was diagnosed with severe anxiety. There were days I’d lie in hospital beds ridden with fear from panic attacks wondering why I existed. I turned away from my relationship with Christ and turned to other remedies to cope with my pain. Remedies that consisted of trying to find answers to my anxiety via Google, shopping and excessive spending, not going to church and wallowing in misery.

For those of you that are new to my blog please check out my first post to get more detail on the last few years of my experience with anxiety. Fast forward back to the birth of my daughter and I finally see the light at the end of the tunnel. For the past few years, I’ve experienced so much pain and now I know it was apart of my purpose. Being a mother has given me something else to live for and for my daughter I am forever grateful.  While there is so much to catch you all up on, which I will do in future posts, I want to take the time to share a letter I wrote to my daughter.

Dear Adele Marie, 

As I write this letter I am in awe of your presence. I couldn’t have timed your arrival in your dad and I’s lives for a better time. Since you’ve been born being your mother has been one of the best roles I’ve ever had in my life. I want you to know that you have given my life so much more meaning. Not only am I overwhelming filled with joy, I also have so much peace in my heart. For years there was a void in my heart waiting to be filled and your life has filled every crack and crevice that needed repair. Part of my life’s purpose is being a mother to you. I can’t wait to watch you grow and blossom into a beautiful young woman. Meeting you showed me God’s unconditional love for me. He saw fit to bless me with you. More importantly He placed you in my life in His timing and as always the timing was perfect. You are everything I’ve been praying for. You’ve reminded me to trust God in ways that I forgot how to and now I can rest assure His promises for me are coming to pass. I love everything that you are and want you to know you mean so much to me!

I just want to thank you all for your continued support and for reading my writing. I can’t wait to share with you all more about my pregnancy experience and my journey as a new mom so, stay tuned!