Motherhood // What I've learned in 2.5 years
If you've been following along on instagram you may have heard to me talk about a "shift" happening in my business. As of right now, it's just a feeling in my gut and I have yet to discover what that means exactly. However, in my quest to "figure it all out", I've started trying to incorporate some of my old passions that I let slip through the cracks when I became a mom. Not to say that those passions were neglected - they weren't. It was simply a season in my life that I needed to dedicate my focus on being a new a mom whilst trying to keep my head above water running a small business. Which, I'm finally telling myself was a good thing.
But now that Ruby is a bit older and starting preschool twice a week (more on that later), it's time to get back to myself. Writing is one of those things I've always enjoyed. My writing skills aren't very profound, but I do enjoy it nonetheless. And what do I love even more than writing? Being a mom, obvs. So I'm combining my two loves in to one. I have zero expectations for these posts, and maybe this will be my only post ever (hopefully not, though) or maybe I'll eventually start a separate blog altogether? Either way, I'm excited to explore and document this season in life.
All of this is the perfect segway for the first thing I've learned in the last 2.5 years of motherhood...
- MOMS ARE THE FOUNDATION OF THE FAMILY: You've probably heard the cliche 100,000 times. How you need to secure your own oxygen mask before helping others. But LORD is it true. As a mom, I'm constantly putting my own well-being aside for the greater good of my family. Like I said before, there is a season in our motherhood journey where I believe our babies need that from us. But, I also believe that if we continue to live this way forever we are really doing a disservice to ourselves AND our families. It's been a really hard truth for me to swallow, but I now know the importance of being at my best and the profound affect it has on my family. Which is why I'm writing more, exercising my soul and body regularly, indulging in girl's nights more often, and traveling as much as I can. Thankfully, I have a very supportive partner who always encourages and helps remind me to take care of myself.
- Take advice with a grain of salt: When you become a mom it sometimes feels as though people are just dying to cram you with unsolicited advice about how you should be caring for your child. Some advice is truly helpful, and then there is some that is just complete and utter crap. I've had some really terrible advice come from trustworthy sources. From the beginning of my motherhood journey, I tried to make sure every parenting decision I made was because it felt right FOR US. Not because so-and-so did it and it worked for them. I am always open to criticism and advice (when it comes from a good place) and it usually does, but holding my own values closely and knowing my child well was/is always my first priority.
- Kids are more resilient than we think: Then, there are times when I think I know my child SO WELL. To be completely honest, I am usually dead wrong when I make assumptions about how she will react or adjust to a situation. She continues to surprise me with her independence and autonomy daily. One thing I've learned (only quite recently) is that I need to stop the whole, hope for the best and expect the worse mentality that I've lived by for so long. I'm slowly changing those thoughts to be positive, telling myself that Ruby is more resilient than I think - and it's the truth, she really is. Kids have far less baggage than we do. They live in the moment. They don't have a ton of anxiety and worry holding them back like we adults do.
- We are the example: My parenting is FAR from perfect. For example, Ruby has recently learned to drop the "F bomb". You're welcome, world. She copies literally EVERYTHING we say and do. I can tell her all day long to be loving and kind to her peers, but when I have a problem holding my tongue with my husband, she will in turn, do the same to him. Like I said, FAR from perfect, guys. But I'm working on it. I've learned that if I really want to raise a strong, independent, kind, intuitive person who loves herself and others, I need to be that person in my own life. This one is hard, but it's so crucial.
- There's no such thing as a perfect parent: I am totally guilty of believing that some moms just have it all figured out. Their hair and makeup always look perfectly polished, their kids sleep through the night early, they have successful careers, a beautifully styled home and wardrobe, seemingly perfect marriages, all whilst juggling several kids. Then, here I am with yesterday's smoothie stains on my clothes, haven't showered in days, struggling to make ends meet, and I only have ONE child. But deep down I know what's true. There is no such thing as a perfect parent. We all struggle in our own ways and looks can be very deceiving. As long as I'm doing the best I can, I am doing a GOOD JOB.
So there you have it. It only took me 2.5 years to learn these five things and yet, there's still SO MUCH for me to learn. Kids are the greatest gift because they are constantly teaching us about ourselves. Hopefully I can in turn, teach Ruby a thing or two one day.