Being a mother was something I had expected I could do without even thinking about it. I am a caring and loving person; I was always the person who made sure my friends came home when they were drunk from a night out.
For me mother, is described as a person who gives up everything for their child, takes care of and loves the child unconditionally. A mother is someone who has it all figured out, a career, her home, and life. And breezes through it all.
Of course, I knew it wouldn’t be simple; long days and nights, crying kids, crying mom, anger, frustration, and a lot of fun would be part of it all. I would give birth to my child, a switch would turn on, and I would be a mom.
How I underestimated it all!
It’s been almost a year now since AJ was born. A year!
One whole fucking year has passed, and I still do not grasp the full impact of motherhood. I also still do not know who I am. A mother, a writer, me? I do not know.
What I do know is who I was before AJ. And how much I have given up of that person from my past.
Where I expected to fly through motherhood, I ended up crashing and burning; I lost sight of who I was, which made me only a mother.
Do not get me wrong; I love being a mother. But I need to be me too to function. To get through a day, to find courage for the next, and to live out — as I plan a long life — my life in one piece.
If I had known what I know now, I would have done things differently. I would still have become a mom, but I would have prepared better for it. I do know that you are never ready for a child. They are their person from the moment they are born. And the troubled start with AJ didn’t help either.
Where I expected to be an instant mom, I became instantly lost. Sleep deprived, overstimulated from AJ’s crying. I was feeling like a milk factory and nothing more while I breastfed. I hated it because everyone told me it would be beautiful! I did it for three weeks and then decided to stop; I wasn’t enjoying it. It took so much energy out of me, energy I needed to get through the day.
I have felt like a lesser mom because of it, but I also knew it was for the better. This wasn’t the only realization I had when AJ was little; there were more, many more!
I am a caring, loving woman, but I am not an instant mom.
I am AJ’s mom, and I love that! But still, I find it hard to be proud of the title, to accept it as mine because I underestimated motherhood.
It isn’t a walk in the park; it isn’t something I was born to do. It is something I learned, chose, and love because of that.
I wasn’t born to become a mom. I grew into the role, and I am still growing. I have such massive respect for the mothers around me. Motherhood isn’t a job; it’s a life, and in a way, that is even heavier! A job you can come home from and turn off when you want. You are a mother or a father, a parent in general, something you can’t turn off; you will be that for the rest of your life.
I wouldn’t resign from this job, not ever! Even if there will be and have been days I wished I could.
I underestimated motherhood and the downsides, but I also underestimated the joy, love, and laughter my little boy gives me. The downsides do weigh heavier for now; the days are still long and change too fast for my autistic brain to keep up with. But the love from AJ is worth it!