Everyone wants to tell you how much your life will change: You’ll never sleep again, your boobs will become flapjacks, and you’ll end up resenting your husband.
If you’ve heard any of that bullshit, let me just be the voice of reason for a second. Yes, things will change. And change, while uncomfortable and often challenging, doesn’t have to be the end of life as we know it. I loved my life pre-baby. When people told me everything was about to change, it sent me into a panic because the reason I was having a kid was to share my life with them. No one was more vocal about the loss of life than other moms. Maybe you have cooler mom friends, but I only had two who were normal people. Everyone else seemed to ride the line between expecting martyrdom and pity for the decision they made to have a child.
What I knew for certain is that this was a decision my husband and I had made with excitement. And we weren’t about to raise a child in a home where mom was always put out by the fact that the child had come to wreck her party. I felt a responsibility to change the conversation. And while I had my days of hating my husband for not having boobs, or throwing tantrums because I didn’t get enough sleep, they were fleeting.
What I wish someone would have helped me focus on pre-baby was how much you gain when you have a child. I have more focus, more drive, more clarity around what matters most to me. I’m much more compassionate, affectionate and playful thanks to my son. My business is more efficient and my gratitude for what I have is greater than the envy of those that have more.
My tiny human is about to turn one next week and I didn’t want to get all sentimental about it because I really love this pre-toddler phase. But damn, I’m really proud of who I’ve become in the last year. I’m proud of the decisions I’ve made, even if some of them will scar him for life. I’m proud of my husband and I for still liking each other and making our marriage a priority. I’m proud of who I’ve become as a leader. But most importantly I’m proud that I was open to being changed for the better because of my kid without compromising the pieces of myself that I think make me unique.
Don’t let anyone tell you that becoming a mom requires the absence of the things you love most about your life. Choose instead to believe that it’s a powerful catalyst to unleashing a part of you that has never existed before. A part of you that will simply enhance the life you love so much, not diminish it.