Becoming A Mother Is Like…
Becoming a mother is like…being in a sailboat race, and you’re in first place, your boat cutting through the wake with ease, heeling on it’s side, white capped wake spreading out behind you, carrying you ever closer to the finish line…until all of a sudden the wind spills out of your sails…
And the momentum is gone…for a moment.
The wind will find you again, but this time you might be in second place.
Motherhood is like that.
First you think you are going to be the best Mom ever. The entire time you are pregnant. And you spend countless hours talking with your husband about how great it is going to be, how your lifestyle won’t really be changing at all. How other parents just must not ‘get it’. All those adventures you dreamed of, you would just get on with it and bring baby too! Ahhhh, yes. You are cruising along here, breaking away from the rest of the sailing pack.
Then the early labor leads to three weeks in the NICU, and four months of crying every evening from 6-10. Your sails slack. You realize you don’t actually want to go camping with a two month old cause how good could sitting by the fire for three hours really be for your angels lungs, even if the s’mores are so tasty? And you also grasp reality, that as you have chosen to be a SAHM…the bank account no longer agrees that Paris sounds great for your 35th birthday…
But you adjust your direction a tad, and the wind again is at your back, urging you forward. You come to understand that you love your baby so much, that all those other dreams pale in comparison. You are so going to win this race after all.
Then you realize, when your first baby is now five, that after a few days of being a pretty good Mom, no yelling, no fighting, no wanting to rip your hair out, and no dreams of moving to a far away exotic locale, you start finding yourself becoming a bit judgmental. Cocky is more like it. You see another Mom leaving the grocery store yelling at her child practically in tears and you think to yourself, so self righteously, that it has been quite some time since you behaved in that manner. You must have finally mastered this thing called Motherhood.
Until the next day of course. When you will be sucking the wind out of your own sails due to the fact that your kids did something so illogical, to you at least, that you over react in the same tear filled manner your fellow Mom did just the day before. Then you proceed to berate and guilt yourself into thinking you haven’t mastered shit and you just might be the worst Mom on the planet.
From conception until your death, it never ends.
It is a constant correction, this parenting game…a consistent manning of the helm as you try to do what is best for your kids on any given day. Even those days you are so not at your best.
There is no chance of actually winning this race. There are way too many variables, and your boat might actually sink on more than one occasion. Straight to the bottom of the sea. But as any captain will do, you won’t let this baby go without a fight. You will steer your craft with more control and confidence each and every time, guiding your ship into swifter tides.
Again, and again, and again…
P.S. On Mother’s Day, go to www.getbornmag.com/blog for a special message about becoming a mother from editor Heather Janssen AND be entered for FREE, FABULOUS schwag to splurge your fabulous self from participating get born advertisers. (Sneak peak here, here, and here.)