“Whether your pregnancy was meticulously planned, medically coaxed, or happened by surprise, one thing is certain—your life will never be the same.” (Catherine Jones)
There is nothing but truth in this quote. Your life will never be the same and how could it be!? Your life takes on a new meaning, widens to new dimensions and makes space for a kind of love that you have never known. A kind of love that burns throughout your whole body; deep, meaningful and unconditional.
Looking back at my first pregnancy, I definitely recall many people telling me about the joys of motherhood, but only did I realize after becoming a Mama how hard it is to actually relate when you have not experienced the kind of love they speak of. Of course the messy, tough and hard bits of motherhood get shared as well. More than once would I hear - ‘Get all the sleep you can get now’, ‘Enjoy the time you have to yourself’, ‘Get all your traveling out of your system’, and whilst these comments may have truth to them (especially the sleep!), life also becomes so much richer, more wholesome, fun, and more rewarding in every way possible.
My experience of motherhood so far has affected me in more ways than one. I want to hold on to these reflections and thoughts because I know that my journey of motherhood will take on new meaning over and over again - and unfold in ways I could have never imagined. How beautiful it will be to, one day, look back on what I felt so early on in my story.
- Motherhood is much more joyful than I could have ever imagined. I absolutely LOVE being a Mama to our little ones. It has brought a richness and a meaning to life that nothing else can bring.
- Being a mother has grounded me. I have found a lot more inner calmness and peace than I felt I had previously in my life. It puts things into perspective and makes you realize that all those little things in life, which you may have stressed over previously, really aren’t worth the stress or worry. The most important thing in life is in front of you right now – happy and healthy little child(ren). Your child. Your children.
- Being a mother is keeping me young!! Maybe not physically (hah!) but young at heart. I absolutely love seeing life through their eyes - those curious big eyes that appreciate all the little detail and that only see the good and the beautiful. It is inspiring and nourishes the soul.
- More than ever before do I realize how precious and important it is to be present. Life moves fast, so much faster all of a sudden and if you don’t stop to just let loose and be present with your child/children, you will miss a whole lot of wonderful. And believe me I know (!!) that this is not always easy and even impossible at times. As much as our intentions may be right, we have so much on our plates as mothers and sometimes have to really remind and force ourselves to stop and focus on the only thing that truly matters.
- Celebrate every single day. Even if you feel you are doing this before you become a mother, you do it to new heights with a little one in your life. That smile that wakes you every single morning, a smile fueled by the purest love you have ever seen, inevitably makes you celebrate and feel endlessly grateful for this precious little gift that is your own.
- I am much more thankful for what I have as it allows me to give and provide for our little being. In a way, motherhood feels like an awakening, as my desire for fairness, equity, justice and opportunity for our children in this world is naturally stronger than it ever was. I hope to help more to those in need in the years to come.
- By giving birth to a child, you may find that you give birth to new possibilities in yourself. I have found a lot of new inspiration and interests as a result of being a mother. Perhaps some doors have closed but a lot more have opened.
- I have learned to be more gentle with myself and manage my expectations better. There are only so many things you can achieve in one day and also if nothing got crossed off your to-do list because you spent every moment with your little one (and spent their nap times cleaning up, taking a shower or just feeding yourself for a change), then that is NOT a failure of a day! It is perfectly OK and you have done exactly what you are meant to be doing. Believe me, this is not easy and I still find it challenging every single day.
- I always feel like I could be doing something better. I have learnt that this feeling is absolutely normal and most likely will never cease to be felt in the heart of any mother but this quote helps me in those times of doubt: “There’s no way to be a perfect mother and a million ways to be a good one.” (Jill Churchill)
- And finally, motherhood has made me appreciate and acknowledge that marriage takes a lot of work. I try so hard for our little ones (and give everything!) that I sometimes forget that building my relationship with his father is just as essential and important for us all. We’ve been together for over twelve years (married for 5 of those years) and while my husband is my best friend and love of my life, it takes work every day. With children in the mix, the definition of marriage is constantly evolving, but always, always, involves patience (a lot of it!), understanding, empathy and unconditional love. Making time for one another without our little one is absolutely essential.