I have noticed a trend lately. Brave mothers who are not to afraid to admit that motherhood is not only not what they expected, but they they dont actually like it!
Personally, I am somewhat in that boat too. You could say I have one foot in that boat and the other foot on firm ground.
Its not only that its "not easy." This is true though. Motherhood has its challenges, just like anything worthwhile in life. But more than that, there are days and sometimes weeks where I just dont like it!
Lets add a bit of backstory here. I was 36 when I finally married my soulmate and best friend, Greg. We had been dating for 3 years, and we got engaged in July, and then we married that September. (Less than 3 months!) Why the rush? Well, we wanted to move in together and neither of us believed in living together before marriage.
I accidentally became pregnant with Cora on our mini-moon to Atlantic City! A somewhat embarrassing place to get knocked up, oops. I was so shocked when I found out that I could barely process it. The pregnancy meant that we couldnt go on our real honeymoon later that year. I was sad about that and felt I had potentially made a major misstep.
I found out I needed to have a cerclage at 20 weeks. I opted to have the cerclage vs going on bed rest. Note: If you know me then you know why bed rest would never work for me.
The rest of the pregnancy I suffered through constant nausea, a terrible taste in my mouth, chapped lips that never healed, nose bleeds, pelvic pain, hip pain. You name it. There was never a day that passed where I "forgot" I was pregnant.
I knew that I needed to be grateful for the gift of a baby girl, but I had a hard time getting there mentally.
Cora was born on her due date, which is fairly uncommon, but I was ready. I had a GREAT birth experience. I would do it again 1000 times vs pregnancy.
Recovery from birth was shocking. Its impossible to explain to anyone who hasnt done it. Some moments I felt okay, but mostly I felt drained. I wasnt giving myself enough grace or time. I cried a lot. I thought "what have I done" many many times.
I wondered why I was so upset all the time. I had this perfectly healthy gorgeous little girl, but I wasnt happy. Maybe I had PPD, but maybe not. Maybe motherhood wasnt for me, and then what!? I just didnt like that all of a sudden everything was my responsibility. I had to do EVERYTHING. It seemed impossible. I was overwhelmed all the time, and I hated it.
I had family to come help, and my husband was helpful, but no one could do what only I could. I didnt like it. I missed my "old life," I felt distance from my husband. I felt he couldnt understand what I was going through, because the truth is...he couldnt. I didnt feel an instant bond with my baby. She was a job stealing my time. I felt I had to give up all of my dreams to be a mom. It was unacceptable and I started to hate it.
The newborn stage is a bit of a blur in retrospect, but I can recall very clearly the way I felt, and sometimes still feel.
This post is not about breastfeeding, so I wont go into all the separate challenges we went through there (many).
I wish I could end this post by saying all of these things happened, and then one day I woke up and loved motherhood. That would be a lie, and not helpful to anyone who is having similar struggles.
I can say that things did improve little by little over time. Now that Cora is a bit older one of my favorite things to do is spend time with her. Shes an incredible person, and I love her more that anyone else in the whole world.
Loving my child has never been the problem. I didnt "bond" to her right away its true. But, once I did, it was/is incredible.
Motherhood has been the challenge of my life, and it is a complicated one.
I appreciate the women who are brave enough to admit that motherhood isnt what they expected, and that there are times they dont like it at all! I believe if we can be honest and less judgmental we can better support each other.