I didn’t think motherhood would be this hard.
There I said it.
I mean, I always wanted to be a mom. I cheered when I saw those 2 pink lines, already planning my picture perfect journey. I dreamt of freshly scrubbed children in shoes without scuffs. Perfectly combed hair and matching outfits. Not totally matching because that’d be trying to hard, but all in the same color scheme. More effortlessly cool if you know what I mean. I was planning on little ballerinas and soccer stars. I would be the queen of play dates and everyone would want an invite to our over the top birthday parties.
Oh If I could have just one word with 25 year old newly pregnant Danielle… it would have to be GOTCHA. Because come on. I did not sign up for all of this. I feel as if my wish went straight into the universe, got lost in translation, and instead of motherhood bliss I ended up with a side show carnival.
I expected squabbles and some sibling rivalry…but It just wasn’t supposed to be this hard.
Let me be the first to tell you, it’s a long fall from your picture perfect dreams to your newly found reality. And you may not give in to it at first. I hung on to the dream for a bit too. Clinging to what was left of my idealistic visions.
You’ll find us soon.
The rest of us moms.
Sitting over here in reality. Did I say sitting? I mean maybe sitting, if no one needs any milk. Some of us are cleaning spilled juice. Some are cheering on at t-ball and some are buried in laundry. Some are working and some are skipping pages in a story book praying for naptime to come easy. Some are angry over something and some are feeling content. I am however pretty sure we’re all tired.
Most days I’m lucky if everyone brushes their teeth. Shoes look 3 years old after 2 outings and I am honestly not sure if my 4 year old wears underwear. And no, I really don’t care enough to check. I’m busy sweeping the Cheerios off the floor for the 259th breakfast in a row. Stuck in a mundane routine that has me sometimes secretly crying in the bathroom.
And if you’re a mom-to-be I don’t say this to scare you. But my god. Someone is always hungry, tired, or bleeding. Literally. All. Day. Long. It takes me 2 days to run a load of laundry because I walk in and out of the laundry room 12 times before I remember to turn the machine on. My hair is a mess and 9 times out of 10 I wore the shirt you see me in to bed the night before. On a good day I feel like I run camp of bandits with 3 kids all having 12 tiny personalities ranging from syrupy sweet to downright manic. Can you imagine a bad day?
It’s hard you know…
Feeling so defeated.
Feeling like you’re always 3 steps behind and can never catch up. It weighs heavy on my heart when I think of how I imagined my motherhood to be versus how it turned out. My daydreams of mama bliss are a far cry from my days on this never ending show of survivor. And sometimes I just need to remind myself that it’s ok.
That hopefully I’ll forget how frustrated I got all the time and how I wanted to crawl in bed at 8 pm every night. I’ll forget stressing about extracurricular activities and math homework and who is best friends with who.
And I’ll cross my fingers that they won’t remember me losing my mind that one time. Or few times. That they will forget the nightly “eat your dinner” arguments and how I made them wash their hands. They will forget calling me “mean mommy” and telling me how unfair their life is.
And hopefully I’ll forget how tonight I agreed with them. I’ll forget how I said my life was unfair too. That I didn’t think it would be this hard. Maybe we will all forget how we just stared at each other as I burst into tears ending with all of us on the kitchen floor in a group hug surrounded by crumbs.
I peel myself off the kitchen floor and announce it’s time for baths. In an instant I’m back to my reality. I feel my eyes roll as I follow them up the stairs listening to them argue about who goes first, who reads what and so on.
It takes longer than usual to get them to bed and minutes after I walk downstairs I hear the baby cry out.
Not off the clock yet mama.
I head back into his room and I reach into his crib and pull him out. Hold him tight to my chest and I feel his little arms wrap as far as they can reach around my neck. I fall back into his chair and hold him tight. I feel the thumping of our hearts beating against one another. Suddenly they’re beating in sync and I exhale a deep breath that I didn’t realize I’d been holding in all day. A single hot tear rolls down my cheek and I close my eyes. He is quiet now. A sense of peace comes over me as I focus on our breathing. Breathe in. Breathe out. All is calm.
I certainly didn’t think it would be this hard, but I also didn’t know how perfect the reality of my motherhood would truly be, in the ways I least expected it.