To give life, something else dies
I’ll never forget the day I gave birth. It felt like my body split in two — oh wait–it did. People often don’t talk about it. In that exact moment when your child is born, something else dies.
That part of yourself that believes life is all about you — dies. All of the sudden life is about your baby. In an instant, your care for another human supersedes any care you will ever have for yourself again.
You will never love yourself as much again.
Ask any mom, would you rather get sick and die or your child get sick and die? If you could take your child’s bullying away, and bring it on yourself instead, would you? If you could take ANY of your child’s struggles for yourself would you?
Someone once said, having a child is like having your heart beat outside your body. Brene Brown tells us it is vulnerable to love. It’s brave to love that much. It’s beyond physical understanding the power of a mother’s love.
Mother’s are essential workers. No question. But, our job is not what you’d think it should be.
The cruel joke is that while you would take any pain, any challenge, any hardship for your child — you can’t. And, the harder you try to fix your kids lives, the worse it makes it for them.
As moms, we have to learn to give birth to a new life
As moms, we have to learn to give birth to a new life: A life where we bravely, vulnerably, love ourselves and love our kids and families. And allow ourselves to be two separate things. Maybe that’s why birth is so dramatic… maybe it’s to remind us that we are no longer one unit. Mom and baby. When that child comes out, you notice. LOL 🙂
I’ll never forget how odd it felt to see my baby across the room being weighed moments after being in my body. How was that little thing living without me? How was that little thing not in my body? That little warm, jiggling bump that was rumbling around in my tummy, now had it’s own hospital bracelet. I came into the hospital as one patient, and suddenly we were two hospital patients. SO. WEIRD!!
Nature, life, and the very process of birth is screaming at us: You are two separate people. And, if that’s not enough, we have to actually cut the umbilical cord, just to underline the point. I remember crying when my son’s umbilical stump of a cord fell off . It seemed odd, especially because it smelled so awful, you think I’d be happy. But, it was just yet another reminder that my connection with him was fading. And, that’s the natural part of life.
As moms, we have so many weird, odd, gross jobs we never thought we’d do. Am I right??
But, the hardest, most unnatural, and important job as a mom is to separate from your kids. Step back. Live your life. Let your kids live their lives. Two different people.
Honor their journey.
Here’s the hard part. That means we have to watch them struggle. Their life is THEIR journey. They have their own lessons to learn. They need to make mistakes, learn and grow. That means you will watch them fall down. Get stitches in their forehead. Watch them not make the “A Team.” Not make the team at all. Get left out. Get left behind. Say the wrong thing. Not get an invite to the dance. Miss out. Date the “wrong” person. Fall behind on school work. Procrastinate. Get behind on college apps. Struggle through their decisions for college. Get their heart broken. Struggle through their pain.
It’s not that we can’t support our kids. But, our job is to mostly be there for them along their journey. Listen to them. Tell them about our own lives. Help them notice their feelings. Tell them about your feelings.
We have to sit on our hands and try our best not to fix things. And, better yet, our job is to relearn loving ourselves. We will spend the rest of our lives trying to love ourselves as much as our kids. I’m convinced we many never achieve it, but it’s important to try.
The best thing we can do is to live our best life. Try new things, fall down and get back up. Make mistakes, try again. Take care of ourselves.
Our kids are watching us– no matter how old they are. We can show them how to be brave, try new things, work hard, love well, eat well, live a great life. We can’t tell them.
Happy Mother’s Day ladies. Welcome to the most impossible, frustrating and unnatural job ever. Let the people you love most in the world struggle and try your hardest to love yourself even half as much as your kids.
It’s not for the faint of heart. Most days you will feel like you’re failing. You never get to quit. No matter what you do, or where you go, you never stop being a mom. You are warriors women. You love fiercely. Your body is built to endure more physical pain. Your brains are wired to hear your baby cry. Your brain is wired to feel the pain in others.
You are magical. Keep rocking mama’s