Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Things I Didn't Know Until I Became a Mom


I will readily tell you that I was completely ignorant about life with a child before I became a mom. I know everyone says it, but I was that person who, upon seeing a mother wrangle a screaming child in the buggy with one hand while simultaneously chasing down a rowdy toddler in the aisle at Target, swore to myself: "That will never be me."

What I would love to say to that hypothetically blind 19-year-old at Target buying a skimpy two-piece bathing suit with money she didn't have? A big, fat: HA! And let's add another: HA! 

AmIright?

But it's true. There are so many things I never understood until I became a mom. As much as I thought I wouldn't be the lady with the screaming baby at a store…I have become her. Twice. And I know there will be many more times. As much as I thought I would have the baby that slept through the night from day one…I don't. He does a pretty bang-up job of that now, but he's almost three months old. So there's that. 

But what are some of those other things, you ask? I'm so glad you did. 


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1. It truly does take forever to get out the door. 
Brandon and I try super hard to not be "those people" who - upon having a child - are always late to places and events. I was never late before I had a baby, so I try my hardest to not be late now that we do. But, it truly is a process to get all three of us out the door and on time, at that. Especially because I'm still nursing, so there's 30 minutes {plus the 15 to burp and wait for my spit-up-prone child to get it all out} right there. I've learned to just start getting ready as soon as I've fed Walker and laid him down for his nap, but you have to calculate him waking up early, not wanting to go down on time, etc. I'm telling you: a process. I've learned how to do my make-up in about five minutes, I'll tell you that. 

2. Stay-at-home mom's don't just sit around.
Oh, no. Not in the least. My mom was a stay-at-home mom and - until I had Walker - thought she and other stay-at-home moms had all the free time in the world. In my blind brain, I thought they could get up when they wanted; and I envied the fact that they never had to wear make-up and sit in traffic to and from work twice a day. But wowza…I was wrong. I've learned that half the time I don't put make-up on is because I truly don't have time to do it while tending to Walker. And that the dishwasher will always need to be unloaded. And clothes will always need to be folded. And sheets will get spit-up on. And floors will need to get vacuumed. And there's a baby that needs your undivided attention 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Being a stay-at-home mom is a full-time job in and of itself. 

I haven't had the chance to be a working mom yet - and I will in two weeks, don't you worry - but I can tell you that it's just as hard, I'm sure of it. You leave for one job and come home to another. I don't know how I'm going to do it. 


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3. You can't just "run" anywhere. 
Before Walker, I would run to Target; or HomeGoods; or Walgreens; or…anywhere. Now, not so much. Like I said in #1, it's a process. I have to schedule my errands-running time around Walker's eating schedule…because Lord knows I don't want to subject anyone to more screaming than they should have to hear! And on that note, having a baby in a car seat for hours upon end just doesn't work. One hour? Yes. Four hours? Not so much. There is no more "running." 

4. Things have to be planned out. 
This goes along with not being able to "run" anywhere. I've never been a truly spontaneous person to begin with, so maybe this one is just me. But I can't just stop what I'm doing and go somewhere or do something. It has to be planned out - and around feedings, at that. I truly miss not having a baby and deciding at the last minute to go out to dinner instead of cooking. Now? Ha! I can't tell you how many times we have decided that and Brandon has then come home with our food instead of us going out to eat. Let's just add a subsection "4a" to this: I miss eating hot meals at our table. It never fails that when dinner is ready to be eaten, Walker wakes up from his evening nap, and I either A) End up letting Brandon eat first while I entertain him and then we switch; or B) Laying him on his play mat and letting him entertain himself with the mirror on it while I eat my dinner on the floor next to him. Never fails. 

5. Alone time is amazing. 
I truly didn't appreciate a kid-free shower, bathroom break or grocery store trip until Walker was here. So, when I get the chance to go to the grocery store alone, I soak it up. I feed him, hand him to his Daddy and am out the door. And then I take my leisurely time at Kroger, going down every aisle, marking things off my list as I put it in my buggy, and even smiling at people. I'm sure the other shoppers think I'm nuts. I never, ever thought I would enjoy the grocery store more. 

6. You will hear phantom baby cries. 
It's true. There are times I think I hear Walker and when I check the monitor, he isn't crying. Tiredness will do that to you. {As will a monitor frequency that picks up your neighbor's daughter. Ummm, yeah.}

7. Vomit, poop and pee {on your kid} are just another thing. 
I will readily admit that I can't stand hearing or seeing someone vomit. Even on TV or in the movies. It makes me gag, in turn. But when it's your kid? It's totally just another thing. I've been thrown up on, peed on and pooped on…in a span of about five minutes one day. Never did I ever think that would be my child, but oh no. It was. And while it was gross, it was just another thing. {Someone else's kid, though? Sick.} I quickly learned that if we're going anywhere, I get dressed last - and I throw my robe on for good measure. Brandon and I have perfected the art of holding the burp cloth just so. And we learned super fast to take a little boy's diaper off super slow. It happens. 

8. Grace is definitely something to be thankful for. 
After a particularly hard day - especially those where I find myself getting frustrated at a baby {it's not hard to do} for not latching correctly, or for not sleeping when I know he's tired - I'm thankful for grace. I'm thankful that God's mercies are new every single morning, and I've never been more thankful for God's grace. There are days when I just want to crawl back in bed, pull the covers over my head and start over…at 10 a.m. But I can't. So I'm thankful that tomorrow is another day and for grace that covers me. 


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9. You will never understand how much you love them. 
It's true. People told me this often, and I didn't get it. But it's true. And the crazy part? I love Brandon and Walker so much - but it's a completely different type of love. I never understood until I became a mom just how "Mama Bear" one can get. Someone told me they were sorry that my baby "was fussy." I almost reached over and slapped them. Shots at the doctor? I cried more than he did, I think - though that's debatable. Thinking into the future about playground jerk kids; a girl breaking his heart; and a myriad of other things? Makes me want to throw up. The love you have for this tiny person makes your heart want to explode out of your chest at times. 

So what about you? What did you not understand, learn or get until a tiny human came into your world? 

{Happy Tuesday.}

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4 comments:

  1. Well you know what? I should have linked my Girl Power post to you! This is what I was basically referencing! You go girl! *wipes tear* Happy Tuesday! xoxo

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  2. ps totally pinning that image with the baby saying- so cute!! ;)

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  3. Another hard thing is that as soon as you think you have it all figured out and things are going smooth BOOM something happens which screws it all up - in the beginning it's rolling over, then sitting up, crawling, baby food instead of bottles, etc. Always something new which screws up your routine and makes you feel like you have nothing under control. It's a vicious cycle!

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  4. I second Ashley's comment. What gets me as soon as I get the hang of one thing, routine, skill what have you then something else changes and it's a whole new ballgame. I stay busier and am more tired than I ever have been in my life but (for the most part) it's also the most fun I have ever had!

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