A Letter To Myself Prior To Motherhood
When I look back I remember a time in which I had strong views and strict guidelines as to how I thought people should raise their children. I have no problem admitting that I was that girl standing in line at the grocery store looking at a helpless mom whose toddler was throwing a tantrum thinking to myself "God! People need to learn to control their damn kids!". Even when I found out that I was pregnant I still had this fairy tale motherhood planned out in my head and it consisted of a whole lot of "I'll never's" and pipe dreams of not allowing myself to be"That Mom". Well let's face it we've all been that mom. Being a mother is not black and white no matter how good you get at making a routine of it. So, I decided to write my former know it all self a letter and tell her exactly how well her plan worked once she became a mom herself.
To My Former Childless Self:
The first thing that I want you to know is that you have no idea. When I say no idea I mean literally no idea at all what so ever about what being a mom entitles. You cant even comprehend the amount of love that you will one day have for someone who will make you their entire world. During your pregnancy you will be miserable. Miserable, fat, and pissed off because you quit smoking the day you saw that positive test. You should probably donate your clothes now because after you have him you will sit on the floor clutching them in your hands balling your eyes out. I'm not being overly dramatic, it's true. You will spend your entire pregnancy being told by people that you were "about to pop" and "having twins". Instead, you end up going two weeks over your due date. That ipod you filled with peaceful music and the things you put in your bag to calm you during your labor wont even cross your mind while bringing him into this world. It was a nice thought though! The moment that you look into your little boys eyes for the first time you won't be feeling peace and serenity like you envision. You'll have what I like to call the "Oh $%#@" moment where you realize that it isn't about you anymore. I know you were hoping for a instant connection but instead you reacted with complete and utter panic. What would you do? How would you do it? How would you handle it? How could you be the best you could be?
I'm sorry to break it to you but you wont be the best mom.... You won't even come close to it! You're going to mess it all up royally. You're going to be THAT mom in the grocery store at least once or twice before you learn to bribe your toddler to keep him from stripping off his clothes and running naked down the frozen food section. Guess what your bribe will be? I can see you cringing already! Candy. You will give your kid candy. You will give him candy to go potty too and give him candy to clean up his toys. Want to know why you'd give into poison sugar coated sweets? Because, it works better than anything else. You will learn that your son can't be fixed with parenting books, other mom's tricks, or the advice that your mother gave you. You will have to do what works with him because kids aren't predictable.
He will watch cartoons and he will play with toy guns and he will poop in the corner of your living room without telling you. He will say bad words and you will desperately try to get him to stop but that will just make him want to say them even more. He will eat mac and cheese out of the box and drink chocolate milk and you will give him apple juice without watering it down. You will try your hardest every day to remember to have him brush his teeth, take his vitamins, count to 5, and pay attention to him even when hes driving you nuts because you know that one day he won't care to hang out with you anymore. He will bring you out of your shell and you will do things you never thought you'd do like run through store parking lots making race car noises and belting songs to him at the top of your lungs inserting his name into random verses and using ridiculous rhyming words just because you love to hear him giggle. You will force yourself to get used to never going to the bathroom alone and perfecting the art of shaving your legs while he sits in the shower with you playing with his toys because he wants to be with you at all times.
He will shock and amaze you every single day with just how smart he is. He will make you prouder than any accomplishment you ever worked to achieve and you will take on a whole new persona in which he is your main point of conversation. When crisis arises you will feel enough adrenaline to throw a freight train to China and you will put yourself in danger without blinking an eye in order to insure that he will be safe. You will kiss your little boy more times that you can count each and every day and tell him that you love him every time that the thought crosses your mind. He will have you wrapped around his finger in over 100 ways but you will feel at peace knowing that he will never feel like he is alone.
There will be days momma let me tell you. Days that you will find yourself getting upset and yelling him in a voice that you didn't even know you possessed. This screaming match will follow with an immense amount of guilt. You will struggle to find a balance between allowing him to venture on any mission he has in mind and knowing that you have to be the bad guy. You will have days that you will feel so warn down and exhausted and you will still put on your game face and jump into mom mode. You will cry out of frustration and find that you are 100 times more emotional than you ever though you could be. You will worry constantly about whether or not you're doing a good job. You will worry that you are going to mess him up. You will worry with every cough, every fever, and every head bump will send you into full fledged panic mode. But Mama, you will do everything that you can to make sure he's happy, healthy, and reaching his full potential. You will give up nice things and valuable items simply because you don't want to take the chance of your little tornado destroying them. And let me tell you, he will destroy everything. Toddlers may be known for this behavior but you will even be assured by other parents that your little boy is exceptionally gifted at creating the biggest messes in all of creation. Because of this, you will have stains on almost everything and only wear white when he is gone. He will also be an artist and by artist I mean that he will give you beautiful abstract sketches on the most creative surfaces he can imagine.... like leather furniture and freshly painted walls.
Former me, the best part about writing this letter is telling you that I'm happy that you failed. Although it took a lot and still bothers you occasionally, the person that you will become due to the fact that you hold such high values of being a mother will be someone that you'll be proud of. You will say it numerous times and I will say it for you now, "Sebastien is the best decision that you ever made". So momma, give that lady in the grocery store a break and hold the damn door for her! Hold strong to your morals but allow yourself to take on a parenting style that is built off of coloring outside the lines. But most importantly take the time to hug and kiss and play with your baby boy as much as you possibly can because one day turns into tomorrow and tomorrow turns into right now much quicker than you can imagine.