Six Truths & Discoveries of Parenthood:
1. Fear vs. Faith
My last post contended with a pretty heavy realization: I can either live each day in complete, paralyzing fear that something may happen to any of my loved ones, or I can have faith that every thing will work out the way it's supposed to. It sounds simple enough, but when I look at my son and try to grasp how much I love him, I pretty much fall to paranoid pieces. I've realized that it is time to let go of what I cannot control. Spending every waking moment worried that I'm going to get a horrible phone call will not stop it. I would rather spend that time enjoying my family and working on my happiness, instead! To read a more in-depth analysis, check out Chronicle 20: Fear vs. Faith.
2. You will cry...ALOT
I was a fairly sensitive person before I had my son. I might have cried at the end of E.T., or listening to my brother play a beautiful piece on his violin. Now I am an emotional mess. I have now cried at the following: a Geico commercial, a particularly moving episode of Sabrina the Teenage Witch, the thought of grocery shopping, finding an actual bra that fits (not a sports bra), Word with Friends, and every single stage of my son's development. I teared up just now writing about crying. I try to avoid certain movies, TV shows, and books because I know they will trigger a cry fest. I see every thing from a mother's perspective, and perhaps the hormones are still raging. It's just become a fact of life.
Your friends are still going out and you're staying in with a teething baby. You may lose some of these friends. You WILL gain others. You would rather sleep next to your spouse than with them. You stop doing your own laundry and concentrate on the baby's. Your parents and in-laws call and visit much more often. MUCH more. People come to visit the baby, not you. You find yourself excited that the baby finally pooped, that your nipples are not as sore, that you can finally wear something other than pajamas and sweatpants. You settle for a good ponytail, rather than those "messy" beach waves. You are different. You are stronger. You are experiencing love that will never fade.
4. Being a parent is like being in a club.
No, not as in The Viper Room. Like, the "You understand the bags under my eyes and the throw up on my t-shirt" club. You talk to random mamas at the park, in the grocery store. You have a new appreciation for the frazzled-looking mom shuffling her kids into a McDonald's because she's too tired to cook. You congratulate a new mom for merely getting out of the house (did that today at Victoria's Secret. Although I wonder what she was doing THERE. I'm just now wanting to step foot in that place...SEVEN months later.) You nod in agreement when another mama describes exactly how you've been feeling or going through with your babe. You can talk about bottle brands for hours and whether you like Babies R Us or Buy Buy Baby better (I prefer the latter). Stuff that may seem mundane to anyone else is fodder for mamas. Welcome to the club!
Say whaaat? Let me put it this way. Big thing: lunch and shopping with friends. Little thing: Baby's nap. What wins? NAP ALL THE WAY, FOLKS. Because a cranky baby is a cranky mom is a cranky dad. We are even cutting Easter short this year because all of the activities fall around Baby G's nap time. The good news is that this is a sacrifice that will only last a few years. At this point, I need these naps as much as he does!
6. Your child IS amazing.
I am the mama who is obsessed with her baby. Every single thing he does seems like a tiny miracle. He moves a toy from here to there? INCREDIBLE. He blinks? BRAVO! I used to be annoyed by parents that bragged about their child's seemingly mundane accomplishments, but now I GET IT. However, I'm not about to slap an Honor Student bumper sticker on my SUV. I'm content capturing these moments on video and film to share with people who show interest. Or, I will watch them myself!
What discoveries have you made since becoming a parent? What are some cliches that are now tried and true in your life? Looking forward to hearing from you!
The Hot Mama