That word used to scare the shit out of me. I always knew I wanted it, more than anything, but it’s a lot of pressure right? Oh you know, just responsible for the lives of tiny humans… no big deal.
I love the saying “I was a perfect mom, then I had kids”. I think we all visualize motherhood to be far different than it actually is. How could we possibly know? It’s definitely a club that you can’t even wrap your mind around until you’re in it, and at that point you’re kind of committed. But there was one other aspect that I totally misjudged: my baggage.
When I pictured myself as a mom before I had children I was this more mature, confident, at peace version of myself. I don’t know if I thought something magical happened at birth and all of my baggage and issues came flying out in the delivery room with the baby, but “mommy” me had it all together.
Well, wasn’t I in for a BIG surprise huh ladies?
Though I will say there is a certain level of “get over yourself-ness” that automatically comes with motherhood, there is no bag check for all of the issues you’ve been carrying around in your head and heart for years.
Actually the opposite has been true for me. Having daughters magnified some of my confidence and body image issues. I have struggled with not seeing myself for who I really am for most of my life, and when I had girls I knew I didn’t want them to be like me in that way, but wanting that for them and doing something about it are two very different things.
After Ainsley was born (#2) I knew the only way to change the pattern was to change it myself through action. After all, more is caught than taught and if I want my girls to grow up looking at themselves with confidence I have show them that every day, not just tell them.
Working through these things is just that, hard damn work, but even at their young ages I know I am building a foundation of self-love, confidence, and grace.
We all want the best for our kids, and in a lot of cases that means we want something different for them than what we have experienced ourselves- here’s the thing sweet mama friend: if you’re hoping for change for them without change within yourself it’s very unlikely. We all have to get our shit out of baggage claim, unpack it, and SHOW our littles how to walk the path we desire for them.