Imagine after years of building your career that one day you’re dropped into a brand new job in a completely different field, that you have no training for. In addition to having a surprise start date, the first day will be the most physically demanding feat you have ever attempted.
There are no holidays, no sick days, and plenty of around the clock meetings. There’s some teamwork involved sure, but you are definitely the one in charge, well, sort of… Your new boss is extremely particular, doesn’t communicate well, and can not control their bodily functions. You ready?
Before I had Stella, I was very nervous about going on maternity leave. It was difficult to imagine not going to work every day, not seeing my coworkers, not being a part of a team. The truth is, maternity leave has been amazing, but not working has given me a bit of a Mom-life crisis, who am I if not my job?
The start of motherhood was an absolute whirlwind for me, being a Mom has changed me and sometimes I’ve wondered whether the old me still exists. When you spend all day with your baby, it can be challenging to find something other than the baby to talk about. And since my
insanely stubborn lovely baby won’t take a bottle, sometimes it feels like my body and my freedom are on loan.
Recently I saw that viral photo of the hockey player breastfeeding her baby in a dressing room and it really struck a chord with me. The photo reminded me of how important it is to still find a way to do the things that make you, you.
It reminded me of the time I was rocking my three month old baby, trying desperately to nurse her to sleep as my husband slid my volleyball kneepads and runners on me so I could sprint out the door and meet my team seconds before we had to step on the court. It reminded me of laying on my yoga mat, trying to free my mind of Mom guilt and relax. It reminded me of that first time I got in my SUV and drove somewhere all by myself, no baby kicking at my ribs or crying in the back seat. Like the iconic scene from Jerry Maguire, sun shining, music blasting, you would have thought I was fleeing the country, not on my way to Wal Mart to buy nursing bras.
I guess what I am trying to say is, that I’m different yes, (how could I not be?) but in many ways, I’m still the same. It can be tricky and guilt inducing to leave your little love every once in awhile, and it definitely requires a supportive partner, but for me? It’s been necessary. When I feel like myself again, I have more energy and appreciation for being Mom.
So mamas, take some time to remember what YOU like to do and come up with a plan to make it happen. We’re more than Moms, we’re unique individuals who have talents, hobbies, and skills that need to be nurtured too.