What? Wait! What happened? Are we really on the 10th edition of the #beingamother project? It would appear so, and from small seeds big things grow, with so many people apparently loving this series on the blog…it’s even been picked up by Netmums, Scary Mommy and Huffington Post! Thanks so much to all of you who have taken part so far, and for all those who have been reading it. I would love to keep this going so if you’re interested to be featured find out how here.
But now, to turn our attention to this week’s edition, featuring Sam from And Then The Fun Began. A self-confessed geriatric mum and defiant non-earth mother, this week she brings to the table her irreverent take on what motherhood means to her…
A few weeks into motherhood I came to the conclusion that being a mum was a journey into darkness. I was tired and depressed and I had a colicky baby and it’s easy to just dismiss that now as something that happens, lasts a few short months and passes on but at the time it is literally life changing – and feels like a change for the worse.
I desperately searched the internet just to find one person who would tell me that it categorically is worth it and that it would get easier and that choosing to have a child was the right thing to do, but of course there was nothing of the sort out there. In fact I read a lot of articles by people who were child free by choice, boasting about fabulous careers and holidays and providing pretty compelling (if cynical) arguments against any points given for what makes parenthood worthwhile.
All those mums who were listing 15 awful things about motherhood, from yukky nappies to horrendous defiant tantrums in supermarkets appeared to be sweetening a bitter pill with their final point: that one little kiss made it all worthwhile. How could that really be the case? Those fabulous singletons were laughing into their lattes at the apparent desperation of such statements and I was at an all-time low.
In the years since that time of course everything has changed. I can see that there is no black and white – it’s not all good or all bad – nothing in life really is, is it? I’m sure that, depending on what stage any given mum is at with her children, there will be a different answer to this question but the early years can definitely be tough.
Now I’ve experienced the quirks and personalities of my children, combined with the innocence and the undeniable love, trust and need for me of all people, I know for myself that it is worth it no matter what anyone else might choose to believe. I know that each stage will bring new challenges but that life will also become more rounded in the fullness of time – it already is (even though I still have one set of ‘threenage’ years still to come!).
Being a mum means being a part of a circle of love and a circle of life. You get what you give and (forgive the cliché) what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger (and there’s strength in numbers!).
Despite the sacrifice of freedom and self initially, eventually, one day those things will return, but with them will be the joy of being a part of something money can’t buy: family, and in the meantime I get to skip, hop, sing, share sleepy cuddles and revel in the process of watching them as they discover each new and wonderful thing that life has to offer. It really doesn’t get much better than that.