February 9, 2015

life with child

Every time I think that I've got this thing locked down, something [...] happens and keeps me in check. First kids get so much love and attention, but they certainly become a victim of first time parenting, right?

And don’t get me started on ‘common sense’. You can convince yourself that every theory/method of parenting is common sense if you want to. It’s common sense to make him eat as much as he can so he sleeps through the night, but it’s also common sense to just give him the food and he’ll eat as much as his body wants. It’s common sense to go in and comfort your child in the middle of the night when they are crying, but it’s also common sense that if you do that every time they will start to expect it and cry just for the comfort. I can go on for 15 pages about this.

Here’s the thing: the first year of motherhood is ONE big dichotomy- a total emotional whack, actually. I feel powerful because I DID THAT and every day I continue to do that. BUT I feel powerless because I am tied emotionally to him at all times and I feel like I can’t make my own decisions any more. I feel beautiful because when people are in love they are more beautiful, and my smile is so broad and genuine. But I feel ugly because my body isn’t exactly up to par and I went ‘mom’ real fast. I feel like I nail it because there are days when the home-baked frittatas are received with a huge YUM, and naps are totally effortless. And yet I miss it constantly because, I mean…  so many reasons - he’s still drinking bottles at night, he only has like 2 play dates a week, his ‘brushing of the teeth’ is a total joke, etc. You name it, I feel like I’m missing it. I feel so grateful and like the luckiest person on the planet, while at the same time feeling like a total martyr; as if I do everything. I don’t. Brian is a serious 50/50 parent but it doesn’t negate that weight on my body. I feel so much pressure and I feel so tired all the time, but so does Brian. It’s easy to feel like a martyr when you are a parent, no matter how much of the work you are doing.

Emily Henderson, on her 14 month old

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