When mom puts herself last, everybody loses.
Updated: Jan 23
I didn't realize I was so selfish. I am. I like what I like, I want what I want. Everyone is really, self serving to some degree. Motherhood is an unselfish act. No one tells you that unless you're careful, you will give up your entire identity. Your needs will get lost in the shuffle. Your needs are last. Mom can get sick, but no one has her back. It's just the nature of how our culture does family life. Mom holds it all together, catering to the needs of everyone but herself. The role of mother isn't really defined, but if it needs to get done, it's moms job. If it's lost, it's mom's job to find it. If anyone is hungry, it's moms job to make food. If the house is messy, it's moms job to clean it. If you need more income, it's moms job to work the extra hours. If there is laundry, it's moms job to wash it. I can't think of any job that isn't "moms" job.
I was so excited to be a mother. To have a squishy tiny baby, perfectly soft and delicate. I have two great, excellent, smart children and I am grateful, so so grateful, to be their mother. I knew raising children would be a challenge but what I didn't take the time to consider was my identity loss. The loss of my wants being met, someone taking care of me. Years into motherhood I laid in my bed, willing myself to get up, feeling purposeless and lost. I had lost my way, trying to help everyone find their own way. I felt like everything that needed to be done, was my job. I stayed up so late everyday trying to get caught up, but there was never an "I'm finished" feeling for the day. I was watching 4 babies out of my house at that time. All under the age of two. To say my days were filled with chaos is an understatement. I was constantly trying to clean my house up because parents were in and out. Not only was my husband not helpful in the tidying up the house but his collection of "things" was what was causing me to have to pick up all the time. I expected messes from the babies, I didn't know I was also going to be his full-time housekeeper.
I was depressed and worn out because everything was moms job and I was failing miserably. My husband (soon to be ex) STILL says to me "I didn't know I was going to marry a woman that wasn't going to work." Are you fucking crazy? All I ever wanted was a family, what I really needed was a supportive husband. Years into motherhood and marriage I couldn't even remember what I liked to do for fun.
I used to be a vibrant, sparkly person. Why was I this person now? A person I hated. A person I wanted to go away every time I listened to my own self bitch and nag about people cleaning up their own stuff. Who was I? How did I get here? I wasn't doing anything well. I wasn't being a good mother, a good wife, a good friend, a good anything. I was being a good disaster. I watched other mothers who seemingly had their shit together and I couldn't figure out what I was doing wrong.