Motherhood shouldn’t equal Servitude
I don’t know who decided that motherhood equals servitude, but it’s causing an epidemic of moms feeling horrible for wanting any sort of personal life. Perfection is unattainable and our quest for it is soul sucking.
I don’t know a single mom who’s not battling anxiety, depression, OCD or mom guilt. Pregnancy hormones change our brain chemistry, making things more difficult-sometimes permanently. Thank God there are medications, but I digress.
I worry about the vulnerability of sharing my experiences. But, I worry more about moms who are feeling lower than they ever felt possible. I’ve been there, years after PPD, sometimes I’m still there.
So, your kid threw a tantrum in a public place? So, you lost your shit and yelled? So, you wanna quit this unpaid 24/7/365 job? Girl, sometimes so do I. And when my child hurls insults, I wonder why I even bother.
Our job of raising tiny humans is to produce adults who must function in the world. Becoming a doormat to protect them from every rejection, slight, and emotional injury is harmful to both you and the kids. Twisting yourself into a pretzel so your kids never miss an event leads to burnout. Losing sight of the wonderful woman who became a mommy and forgetting her interests is an enormous mistake.
Recently, I was asked what I do for fun. I had no answer. Jokes aside, it’s been a long time since I pursued my hobbies, new interests or just simply relaxed. Not only do I need to change my lifestyle for my wellbeing, I need to change it for my children’s. I don’t want them to give up their identity for their kids. More urgently, they need to understand that Mommy is a person. That means sometimes Mommy can’t fulfill every need the minute it arises. Maybe Mommy has to miss an event. Maybe Mommy can’t afford to do something. It doesn’t mean we don’t fiercely love our kids. It means that Mommy is a dynamic human who has interests outside of whatever activities our kids are involved in. And that’s okay. Actually, it’s more than okay. It’s essential.