Motherhood Is

There have been many moments where I simply don't want to be a mom anymore. Moments where I am horrified by the fact that I have become that mom. Moments of utter weakness when I want to whisper, "Don't go," as my husband leaves for work in the morning. Moments of complete selfishness when I feel like I just want a break and I get upset because I can't have one. Moments where I am so down and close to tears that the only thing that helps is trying to see my situation in a humorous light.

Last Wednesday night, I was done. Roxy has been crying and screaming a lot, which isn't like her at all, and it had sort of built up in my head till I couldn't think straight. I just wanted to get out of the house. I didn't care if she came with me, but I needed out.

My husband, being the incredible man that he is, told me to leave for three hours. I protested that that was too long (he was at work all day, how could I ask this of him?) but all he did was pick out my outfit and shove me out the door. Gosh, I cannot get over this man.

So I left. I only drove five minutes away. I sat in a restaurant with a plate of chicken and waffles and I read a book. All alone, with the hood of my hoodie pulled up over my head. At dinnertime, with large families seated all around me. I'm sure that they all thought I was a wackjob. Then I watched the movie Bad Moms.

As I sat there, alone, breathing deep, letting my thoughts wander peacefully, I realized something. Every day being home alone as a mom, I have at least one moment where I simply want to get away and be without the baby. But every single time I am away from my little family, they are all I can think about. I miss them tangibly - miss their smiles and the way their warm bodies feel cuddled next to mine. I feel shaky and stressed because I am not there to take care of them. I am constantly on the verge of running, driving off as fast as I can, dashing up the stairs, and bursting into our apartment, breathless, because I need to see their faces.

Getting away that night reminded me that while having a break can be good, it isn't something I need all the time. It isn't even something I truly want. I am a mom now (that definition changes every day) and even though I think I don't know how to be one, I am one already.

Motherhood is many little things that tend to add up in a negative way - dirty diapers, rushed lunches, never getting enough sleep. But there are moments that stand out that make being a mom something to be treasured, laughed at, and celebrated. Come laugh with me at these moments of my motherhood that are pathetic, witty, and just plain exasperating.

Motherhood is eating a pb & j at three in the morning in a dark kitchen, praying that the baby you just laid down is going to stay asleep.

Motherhood is hating your boobs because even though they are big and sexy, all they do is ache and leak all over the place, like an unwanted runny nose.

Motherhood is being afraid to reach into the crease of the couch, knowing that it is full of the remnants of the hundreds of mini meals you've stuffed in your face with one hand while nursing her with the other.

Motherhood is
feeling guilty when you're alone away from your baby.

Motherhood is pretending to be young and carefree while shopping in the juniors' department at Kohl's. And then spilling Dr. Pepper all over the dressing room because you forgot you were carrying it.

Motherhood is promising yourself that tomorrow will be better. Tomorrow you won't have a meltdown. Tomorrow you won't become irrationally angry if the baby refuses to nap. Tomorrow you will take care of your husband instead of begging him to take care of you.

Motherhood is watching your baby fart and then grin about it, and you immediately tell her that this means she's just like her dad.

Motherhood is trying to rock your baby to sleep and realizing that you're putting yourself to sleep instead of her.

Motherhood is stepping outside for a minute to breathe and notice that there are other things in the world besides your screaming baby.

Motherhood is going to Burger King and the grocery store as a family and feeling like it's date night because how often do you really get out of the house with your husband?

Motherhood is the phrase, "I just want to sleep," running through your head on a continuous loop, until all of a sudden reality nudges you and says, "Sometimes, it doesn't matter what you want."

Motherhood is realizing how your own parents sacrificed everything for you. And there is no way you could ever pay them back (except by letting them get lots of grandchildren snuggles, of course).

Motherhood is having the best sense of style. Plaid flannel with floral pants. A nursing nightgown over baggy sweatpants that belong to your husband. Slippers while out running errands. A shirt that the baby has been drooling on all day. Yes, of course I wore these things, and forgot to change because I hadn't showered yet, so what was the point of clean clothes?

Motherhood is peeking in at the supposed sleeping baby, only to jump three feet in the air when you notice that she is staring through the slats of the crib right at you.

Comment and share your own moments of motherhood so that you, too, can see them in a different light; not as bad days or mistakes or dumb things that happen when you're a mom, but as memories that you're making. 

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