I think every mom has moments of being completely blown away by how awesome motherhood is, as well as times of being completely disillusioned with the whole process. I think it’s good to have enough humility to share your faults, so today, I wanted to share with you the first time I was confronted with a misconception about motherhood.
“It will be a labor of love,” I told everyone. Yes, I had an extremely rough pregnancy, and my husband would always tell me it was to prepare me for the equally rough road of raising children. I used to reply, “Yes, but it will be different then, when I can see them, have an interactive relationship with them… it will be a labor of love.” I think I was forgetting about the self-sacrifice and suffering that often comes with “love”
It was late [or early], baby was only a couple months old, and the crying would not stop. I was exhausted. She wouldn’t eat, she didn’t want a lullaby, it didn’t matter if she was in her crib or in my arms, she was not happy. In that moment, I did not like my baby. I was disgusted with myself. It wasn’t her fault, likewise, it wasn’t my fault. Some times babies cry. My frustration clouded my love for my daughter in that moment, and it was something that I never even would have thought was possible. I was tired, annoyed, and mad at my baby. That’s it. It doesn’t sound that life-shattering. No, I didn’t have postpartum depression, but the thought that, I’m not going to be completely head over heels, in love with my baby all the time, was still hard for me to reconcile. I mean, aren’t all moms dedicated to the adoration of their children? Oh wait…
And now that we’re on the brink of toddler-hood, I find myself having these moments of frustration, where I genuinely don’t like my child in a particular moment. This still shocks me. I have to remember though, that a mother’s love is unconditional even when it doesn’t “feel” like it. As I said before, love requires suffering and self-sacrifice. Some times I don’t like my friends, some times I don’t like my family, some times I don’t like my husband, but I love every single one of them, I show up for them when they need me, I pray for them, and if they were ever in harm’s way, I’d move Heaven and Earth to make them safe again. When I feel like the world’s worst mom, spouse, friend, or daughter… I have to remind myself that I’m human, in the business of taking care of other humans — of course we’re going to get frustrated with each other, it’s part of the process.
Of course, mother and child share a special bond, but if you find yourself wanting a break, don’t freak out. Some times that special relationship with your kids, will feel like any other ordinary relationship you have with loved ones, (and we know, it’s not always about good vibes!)
With baby #2 on the way, I’ve been very reflective lately [and not wanting to cook, hence the spike in personal posts versus my usual balance of parenting AND recipes] and this post was a good reminder that its ok not to be perfect all the time. Because God knows our children won’t be!