Becoming Mommy

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It’s taking me a long time to become Mommy.

When I held my daughter for the first time that January day, I didn’t feel that overwhelming sense of adoration that people always talk about. I felt tired, and holding her on the outside felt foreign.

In fact, of all the experiences in my life that becoming a parent could have been like, it felt the most like culture shock. I wanted to love it, and instead all I could think of were the ways that things were different, the things I had lost that I didn’t know I would lose.

Learning to love my role as mother has, and still does, involve quite a bit of grieving. I’m one who values unstructured time alone, and the more of it, the better. I love my kids but I miss that time. I grieve the loss of that time.

Grief, I find, doesn’t mean that I haven’t gained. Would I trade my littles for all the time I’ll miss over the years that they’re growing up? Never.

But I still miss it. I miss the books unread and the thoughts unthought and the words unwritten. I miss the connections I can’t make and the people I haven’t been able to walk alongside because I’m companioning my children instead.

And the missing is ok. The missing is natural, is life, and if I don’t welcome the missing and love myself as I miss, I will be even more unhappy. In fact, I’ll be beyond unhappy – I’ll be bitter and I may even come to resent my kids and what I don’t have because I have them.

So I grieve. I love myself when I let myself think I’d the time I once had and how I love the things I got to do with it. I don’t try to get it back and I don’t try to pine after those things, but I let myself hold them and the missing of them and I’m a better mother for it.

2 comments

  1. mycountrymanse says:

    Thank you for your beautiful honesty, Sarah:)
     
    I have been a stay at home mom and wife for five years- spending most of my time with my kids and giving up much of myself- more than I would have imagined- along the way.  I can feel both your joy and lament in these lines.  These are feelings we are often afraid to confront as moms, but you are right that we are the better for it:) 
     
    Blessed in finding this post via Emily’s blog:)

  2. emily wierenga says:

    yes! you are showing such GRACE by being honest with yourself, and allowing yourself that space to grieve. beautiful, dear sarah. xo

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