We all have this idea of what motherhood will be like or at least what we hope it will be like, but most of the time it’s drastically different.
Our visions of motherhood are all different, but for the most part they’re pretty similar. We think we will feel fulfilled and complete once we have kids. We feel like we know best and taking advice isn’t really on our to do list. Most commonly, we all have a list of things that we would NEVER do or allow as parents.
Sorry to burst your bubble but motherhood is different, very, very different. After having two kids and getting pregnant with our third I realized I had learned a lot about motherhood and so much of it I wish I had known beforehand. I hope these realities help you grasp motherhood a little sooner than I did.
Everyone is Winging Motherhood
Motherhood has a way of making you ask yourself, “What in the world am I doing?” It’s ok because I can promise you that every other mother out there is asking themselves the exact same thing. We all can’t figure out why our kids are crying, why they won’t sleep, why they refuse naps, or why they are throwing random tantrums in the middle of Target.
It’s easier to admit we don’t know what we’re doing than pretend we have it all together. Let’s be honest, none of us do and no matter how many kids we have we will always be winging motherhood, always.
Every Kid Is Different
My first kid had no medical issues and nursed like a champ, so I naturally expected my second to be the same. Oh Boy, was I in for a huge surprise. My second child had a tumor form on the left side of her neck at only 3 weeks old, had a sever tongue and lip tie that wasn’t diagnosed and corrected till she was three months old, had drastic problems nursing, and we battled a 3-month thrush infection that I promise you was straight from Hell itself.
Not only did my second have medical issues but was just a completely different kid. The way she expressed and felt emotions was the complete opposite from my first. This left my husband and I both lost on how to help guide her. Honestly, we still feel a little lost and she is over 2 years old. I keep reminding myself that every kid is different and one day she and I both will understand her emotions, until then we will just continue winging this whole parent thing.
Milestones are Different for Every Kid
With my first kid I was always worried she was behind on her milestones. I would meet a few kids that would be ahead of her and I would instantly think something was wrong. That is until I noticed that my daughter had learned to walk before my friend’s daughter. This was the same child who was crawling and climbing stairs way before my kid. In that moment I realized that milestones should be seen as rough guidelines not as strict standards. If your kid is a little ahead of the age range or even a little behind then it’s ok. Every kid will reach their different milestones at different times. Your kid may be ahead of some in one area and then behind in others. Don’t let them stress you out. Just go with it.
The best way to describe motherhood is like a roller coaster. You never know what’s around the corner. Sometimes it will be a drop, while other times it will be a full upside-down loop. You just never know. The moment you think you have something figures out, your kids will change overnight and you will be left scratching your head wondering what the heck just happened.
Weather it’s a change in the sleep routine, refusal to take naps, stopped eating their favorite food, or all of a sudden is crying at every little thing just go with it and help your kids walk through it. I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “It’s just a phase.” Well, let me tell you it’s true. Unfortunately, some phases are longer than others and if you let them stress you out you’re going to be one hot mess when it comes to motherhood. Learn to be flexible and know it’s just a phase.
It’s ok to Mother Your Kids Different Than Others
You know how I said earlier that every kid is different, well the same goes for moms. We all have a way of raising our kids and that needs to be ok. When you kids are really little you’re going to hear stories from a ton of other moms about how they choose to do certain things. Some you will agree with but then others you won’t see eye to eye.
Some will use the cry-it-out method while others wouldn’t dare. You may co-sleep while others will have their babies in a bassinet or crib from day one. Other moms may use binkies while some will refuse to use them altogether. Some will never let their kids watch tv or have it very restricted while you may be a little more relaxed with it. You may want to homeschool while others will be set on public school from day one.
Whatever you choose to do or how you choose to raise you kids is just that, Your Choice. You need to do what feels right for you and your family and that’s it. Don’t do something or not do something because you know someone raises their kids that way. It may be right for them, but it could be the complete opposite of what’s best for you and your family. You do you mama, and don’t feel bad about it.
Mom Friends Are A MUST
When you become a mom, your whole life gets turned upside down. Yes, it’s great and nothing is ever as amazing but it’s still a whirlwind and the best thing you can do for yourself is to find some mom friends. I don’t mean just friends, you need mom friends. You’re going to want and need women who fully get your season of life, woman you can vent to and take random strolls through Target.
After my second child I met some moms at a nursing support group and we ended up all becoming friends. We now have a group chat where we vent about our kids throwing tantrums, ask for advice or input on different things we are going through, offer support to other moms and laugh about our day to day lives. Most of the times it’s just a breath of fresh air talking with moms who are going through the same or similar things as you, plus it’s nice to have adults to talk to when your surrounded by babies or toddlers all day long.
Motherhood is wonderful but also chaotic so being a little prepared will just help ease you into it, or at least make you aware of what may be to come instead of it being one huge surprise after another. Just remember; everyone is winging motherhood, milestones and every kid are different, be flexible, it’s ok to mother different than other moms, and to make some mom friends.
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