It has been almost 11 months since I became a mom. Yesterday I was walking Charlie and Webster through the park and I had this moment of complete peace. It kind of felt like an out of body experience. Where I was looking at my life from a different perspective and I thought “I am so lucky.”
I am always conscious of how truly blessed I am but sometimes it feels like the days go by so quickly that I forget to really take note of those insignificant moments in time that stop you in your tracks. It made me think about how much has changed in the past 11 months. Life was great before Charlie but feels so much more complete since he came into our lives. Adjusting to motherhood hasn’t always been easy for me (you can read about that here and here) but has given my life a different meaning and purpose.
In the beginning you don’t want to admit that having a baby has changed you. I wanted to believe that I could be the same person, do the same things and just have Charlie be an extension of the lives that we were already living. I was wrong. So much changes when you have a child. The truth was, I didn’t want to do the same things or be the same person. I wanted to be better for Charlie and for my family.
The easiest way for me to describe how motherhood has changed me would be to tell you what I consider to be my flaws. I am impatient, controlling, easily distracted, a tad selfish and at times, insecure. I still struggle with all of these things but becoming a mom has changed how these look in my life…
Being a mom has made me more patient. Charlie will be one in September. Re-reading that sentence makes me want to cry. If being a mom has taught my anything it is to let time be – don’t rush it, don’t wish it away. All that matters is the time I spend with him and if that means work, social media, my phone, working out or anything else has to wait, then that is okay. I’ve learned to be patient with time, with work, with my relationships and with myself. When I was struggling the first few months of motherhood a sweet reader told me “the days are long but the years are short.” I remember crying and repeating this over and over. I wish I could go back to those hard days, when I had no idea what I was doing and Charlie was so little and helpless. Moments that I wished away and won’t ever get back.
*Be patient with yourself. Remember that as moms, we are always doing the best that we can.
Being a mom has helped me relinquish control. I am what you would call Type A. Not to the extreme but I like to be in control, I like to keep a clean apartment, I like to make plans and I like to know what is coming. Having my own business I was always aware of what my days would look like, always had multiple to-do lists to keep me organized, always vacuumed our apartment at least 5x a week – you get the picture. Enter Charlie and all of that went out the window. Talk about complete lack of control! Our apartment is a mess, I’m in pajamas until 1pm and honestly I haven’t written one to-do list in 11 months. You know what, I don’t even care. Life is more disorganized and chaotic but so much more fun.
Being a mom has taught me to live in the moment. A few weeks ago I realized that I hadn’t taken a photo of Charlie in awhile. Usually I keep our families updated with constant photos on our photo stream and I hadn’t shared anything. Every photo I had shared was on Snapchat and it made me really angry at myself. I love social media but not when the moments I should be capturing are gone in 24 hours, never to be seen again.
We all know this but so much of life is wasted because we are on our phones (I am 110% guilty). Trying to capture a moment rather than enjoying it. You have probably noticed that posting has slowed across my blog and social channels for that exact reason. I’m not going to flood you guys with content that is fluff. I’m trying to be as authentic as possible and that means spending as much time with my family as I can and creating content comes second. Charlie is changing every day and these moments are so important to me.
Being a mom means I live for Charlie. Dave would probably tell you that I’m selfish. He always says it is “Liz’s world” in a sweet, husband way. Mostly because I like to choose the restaurants we go to, I like to plan vacations, I like to spend my weekends with him and tell him he can’t play golf and I just like what I like. It is hard because all day long I am constantly doing things for Charlie. Once Dave is home from work I take full advantage of his help.
Poor Dave, I read an article about how husband’s think their wives change after having a baby. I don’t think I’m the same person I was before Charlie so I’d probably agree. Especially in the first few months when I was legit insane, but now I think we have our new normal. Dave has probably changed too – he is a bit more aware, emotional, sensitive and sweet. It is a tough job but I can’t imagine doing it without him and his constant support.
Being a mom has made me more confident. Growing a baby, having a baby and become a mom is powerful stuff. I feel strong in ways that I never thought possible – not just physically but mentally and emotionally, too. For the first time in my life, without realizing I ever felt this way before, I am content. Life is slower, less exciting, probably a bit boring – but everyday I wake up feeling overwhelmingly happy.
Get details of our apartment here. Photos by Heather Talbert.