“How do you mean?” I asked.
“Well, you could be a little more upbeat.” He said, then waited for my whirlwind of a temper to send him on his way.
But instead, this made me think, am I portraying motherhood in a negative light when I should be painting it all roses?
But motherhood isn’t all roses. Is it wrong for me to admit that?
Becoming a mother has been the most challenging part of my life so far, and I would imagine the challenges will keep on coming. My way of dealing with things has always been to talk about them, sometimes I worry that by doing so, I am endorsing motherhood negatively. This was never my intention.
I used to tell myself that it was MY fault that I have days where I struggle, because MY expectations of motherhood were all snuggles, ‘prefect moments’, laughter, joy, tidy houses, painted nails etc… Yes, thankfully, there are often moments of all of the aforementioned, but along with it OFTEN comes mess, skinned knees, tantrums, biting and screaming. And unfortunately, these are the moments for me that often stick out like a sore thumb at the end of the day, instead of those giggles, kisses and cuddles, which luckily, as a twin mum, I get double of!
Motherhood can be tough before you even become a mother, there are women who struggle with fertility, some mothers have loved and lost before the chance to hold their little bundle. Motherhood can be unfair and cruel before it has even begun. Motherhood isn’t always generous, it isn’t impartial, nor is it often kind.
I hate to say this, but motherhood isn’t everything. You are more than a mother.
You are a daughter, a partner/wife, and often in this day and age you are an employee, you are a friend, you are part of a support system for your newly found group of ‘mummy friends’ (I couldn’t live without my mummy friends), you are an ‘old friend’ to those friends who still hold you very close even though your priorities have changed and your availability for ‘shots and dranks’ never quite matches up with everyone else.
All of these roles beyond motherhood should be made good of for yourself and your children.
Motherhood demands. It demands a lot. It demands pieces of you that you are yet to even discover. It demands and digs out a deep strength in you that you didn’t even know you had.
It’s rescheduling your appointment at the hairdressers because there is nobody but you to mother your little ones that day.
It’s remembering that you’re all out of nappies before it’s too late.
It’s asking a team of doctors, while holding back the tears, to back off after the sixth attempt at getting an I.V in while your babies’ heart rate is reaching over 200bpm.
It’s sobbing over a bad latch.
It’s comforting a crying baby at 4am when you know you have to go to work in a few hours.
But, it is also immeasurable happiness, and a heart that is bursting with pride.
Motherhood has no concept of time. Goodness knows how long it has taken you to get everyone dressed and ready to go out the door, and then BAM, “WE HAVE A SHIT UP THE BACK SITUATION!” We run late on account of the most ridiculous situations, we try our very best to stick to our schedules and routines, but often our little ones have other ideas.
Motherhood isn’t punctual, not only for the mums trying their best to run on time, but it isn’t punctual or considerate for every woman still waiting for their turn at motherhood.
And on the other hand, motherhood isn’t for everyone. I find it liberating to hear from women who honestly declare that they do not wish to have children. Women can mother in many many ways, women can mother a business, they can mother and nurture ideas. Motherhood isn’t all about children.
Motherhood isn’t a competition, it isn’t a case of ‘one size fits all’, it isn’t defined by breast or bottle, it isn’t defined by letting your baby cry it out or deciding to co-sleep. It isn’t about who loses the baby weight first, or who can keep a tidier house. Motherhood is far from tidy, it often leads to investigating peculiar stains you wish you had left alone, it’s gross, oh so very gross, but it’s also so funny and so humbling.
Most importantly, Motherhood is not the end. It may be the end of life as we know it, but it is the beginning of something so special. Yes, it is tough, it can be very challenging and there are days I would love to wake up on my own terms and have a day that belongs to me.
But as for now, it’s time to roll up my sleeves, take the good with the bad, dig into the resourcefulness I have newly acquired to help me through my wonderful new journey of motherhood.
And whatever your journey of motherhood may hold for you, enjoy all of the lovely moments, and through the tough times, try to remember, no matter what, that you’re doing a wonderful job.