I have been encouraged by some to start this for quite some time and I have had reservations. Being a compulsive people pleaser, or to put it less nicely, one who is completely terrified of not being “liked” and respected by all, I have been worried about my thoughts ruffling feathers. It is exactly this obsessive preoccupation that I believe make this an important step in my journey.
Also, I have worried that writing this may look as if I think my life is somehow more interesting or harder than any other mother’s. This is absolutely not the case. These are simply my thoughts an experiences and if by sharing them, I can make someone laugh or lighten the pressure we put on ourselves as mothers and give a little freedom to admit that it is not always fun, then it has served its purpose.
Finally, and maybe the crux of this blog, is that my experiences, while often amusing, have been coupled with sometimes suffocating guilt over the sense that due to my struggles and heartbreak while attempting to create this family, I should have only pure, unadulterated, sunbeams and lolly pops gratitude for my two beautiful children and all of the things that come with them. While I do in fact thank God every day for my babies and never forget what blessed miracles they are, I also am in what often feels like a “barely surviving mode” with them both under two, and 16 months apart. So, while I hope to share many stories of sweetness and joy, I feel that plain and simple honesty is imperative as we all navigate through our lives…whatever our stories may be. We have no ability to affect others in any way while holding our cards close to our chest. And while I have held much envy and respect for those who can live this way, after many repeated attempts, I have never been able to actually do it myself. I am coming to accept that this particular heart refuses to be tucked into any sort of sleeve.
So…. Mommies(and perhaps Daddies) I say this with absolute certainty, no matter how easy or painful our road to parenthood was, whether it was planned, or snuck up on us, it is hard. Rewarding, overwhelmingly beautiful, and hard. There is a book by Andrea J. Buchanan called Mothershock that I highly recommend. I have shed many a tear in the bathtub, glass of wine in one hand and this book in the other. Just hearing another mom be unabashedly honest about her experiences has made me breathe a little easier and feel less alone. I mention it to say that I know that the candid style and content of this blog is in no way revolutionary. I am not the first to share openly the unedited version of motherhood, but the more of us that do, the more support we can offer one another.
Even if only a couple of women read this and can identify, then it is not a waste of time. I will go further and say that even if no one reads it, it is not a waste of time as there are many therapeutic benefits in journaling.
Emily (Mommy to Zachary 23 months and Isabelle 7 months.)