It Does NOT Get Easier…..You Get BETTER

I won’t lie to any mother. It does NOT get easier…..You get better. I’ve never been one to sugar coat motherhood. There may be a lot of great moments, moments when I feel like I could burst with pride and smile as big as my face will allow me, but there are also hard times too. Times where I feel so defeated that I lay down and cry at night. Or in the morning, or with the bathroom door closed with my kids gently, or not so gently banging on it.

I remember sitting in my cute little pink and white rocking chair holding my sweet girl, my body still aching everywhere from the 24 hours of birthing I had experienced just 72 hours prior. I close my eyes and I can see myself gently rocking her. From a distance I see a new Mom in total awh of this being I just gave life to. I see a strong woman who waited all of her life for that very moment. I look closer, I open my heart just a little more and I see tears. Not tears of joy friends. Tears of “oh my god what have I done and I’m not ready for this” kind of tears. I cried the first night we were home with our beautiful daughter. The hormones surged through me and I cried more than I had ever cried in my life. It was fear of the unknown, guilt because I sat there rocking the most beautiful thing I had ever laid my eyes on and all I wanted was my “old” life back. That “old” life I’m talking about was forever gone. I wanted her back in my belly, no matter how many times I had wished for this very moment. I looked at a picture on the wall of my husband kneeling on a dock over looking the lake I spent my summers at. He was gently kissing my baby bump as I looked down at him. I closed my eyes again wishing for that day back. Now, six years later I close my eyes, and wish for that very day back, the day I was filled with uncertainties and doubt, I call it the rocking chair moment that I’ll never forget. In six years it has only gotten more difficult being a parent so I would give anything to go back to rocking in that chair with all of the uncertainties whizzing through my head because……

It Does NOT Get Easier…..You Get BETTER

It Does NOT Get Easier

The day I sat on my bathroom floor hiding from my 14 month old will forever be in my vision.  I was crying so hard sitting on my bathroom floor because I didn’t want to frighten my sweet girl. I cried for my old life back again. I was home with my five week old when she smiled for the first time. I never thought I’d be so blessed to have the opportunity to feed my daughter her first foods, every day, all day long. I was lucky enough to be in the park on a random Wednesday afternoon when I saw my daughter take her first steps. All things in those short 14 months that had pride bursting through me. Yet I cried, wondering why was this feeling of uncertainty not going away. I longed for my career back, my husband to put me first, and for just 24 hours of no worrying. My daughter waddled her cute little diaper butt over to me that afternoon and sat on my lap.  Yes I cried harder. It’s a vision I will always remember because as my daughter gets older I long to be back on that bathroom floor crying. Life was easier then, the bills were less stressful, the house was cleaner and my sweet girl and I didn’t have to struggle to maintain a relationship like we do sometimes…….

It Does NOT Get Easier…..You Get BETTER.

It Does NOT Get Easier

I bounced around the room on a warm August day. Sweating from every crevice of my body holding my infant son. Why couldn’t I calm him? Why was my daughter so easy to calm just by holding her but he screamed like he was in pain? I swaddled, shushed and swayed my 8 week old son for hours at a time but every time I fed him he just continued to scream. We had already been to the doctors three times for the same thing, he didn’t have acid reflux but I was starting to dread the 3-4 hour mark when it was time to feed him again. The screaming afterwards broke me in two. I missed my sweet girl because my days were being consumed by trying to calm my son. I juggled both kids trying to get out every day just to get out and stay sane. When my husband came home from work I would retreat to my bedroom, hold my knees to my chest, slide down the wall and ask what was I doing wrong? Why was this so hard? Why did I decide to have another child when I was just starting to get used to having the one? Press rewind, go back……

It Does NOT Get Easier…..You Get BETTER.

It was a Wednesday like no other. Trying to get both kids fed, dressed and out the door. The usual, I need this and I want more of that filled the kitchen while I packed lunches and warmed up my coffee for the third time in ten minutes. I ushered both kids to the foyer and started putting on coats and hats on, my daughter started with “You always put Drew’s on first.” She gets in his face and scrunches her nose two inches away from his and screams “I hate you Drew!”  My usual bedroom or bathroom escape to go and cry was just too far away. So I lowered myself to the floor, and just cried right then and there. I quit. I was just too mommed out. I didn’t look up I just sat there and cried. Why was my once so sweet girl being so mean to her little brother? Why can I just handle this like a normal person and proceed with my day? All the doubts of how I was doing with this Momma thing flew away from my body when both of my children wrapped their tiny arms around me. The fighting instantly stopped, the room was quiet and the tears stopped flowing. I realized right there sitting on the cold foyer floor, I need to cry more often in front of my kids…….

It Does NOT Get Easier…..You Get BETTER.

It was a cool Fall day, but Winter wasn’t upon us yet. The innocence of my then almost four year old still amazed me. A day that my eyes were opened to just how much harder this parenting thing was going to get. I was picking up my daughter at preschool and I was helping her get into the car. She said “Momma, Dominic said I couldn’t wear this shirt!” I looked at the shirt she was wearing as I fastened the seatbelt around her small little body. It was blue and white striped. That was it. In my heart I knew where this was going to go and I knew I had to follow through with it in just the right way. “Why did he say that honey?” She then said the words I knew was coming, “Because he said it was a boys shirt and I was a girl so I couldn’t wear it!” I just said “Oh really.” I closed the door, I swallowed the lump that had formed in my throat and walked to my side of the truck. I fought back my tears while 1000 different things ran through my mind. I knew what came out of my mouth next was going to forever impact her sweet personality that already lacked so much confidence. I turned around and looked into the most beautiful blue eyes I continuously loose myself in, and said, “honey do you like that shirt you are wearing?” She took those amazing blue eyes and slowly looked down at it, “yes.” I slowly and steadily just said “Well that’s all that matters than sweetie.” She smiled. I silently thanked god that my answer made her smile. I touched her leg and also said, “The next time Dominic, or anyone for that matter, says you can’t wear something you simply say “I like this shirt and I can wear whatever I want to wear.” then walk away. Walk away. I continued to smile at her through the rearview window as I drove home that day. My heart ached in a way I never thought it could ache. That was the day I realized that kids could be really mean, even at four. Four years old. I cried that night. My husband held me as I cried but I didn’t long for my old life back…….

It Does NOT Get Easier…..You Get BETTER.

It Does NOT Get Easier

After a weekend of running around to events, birthday parties and dinner plans I was exhausted. The holidays are quickly coming and the stress is creeping back into our lives. My daughter is in her third month of Kindergarten, my now three year old son is in PreSchool, I’ve volunteered for PTA, signed up to be a Girl Scout Leader and we are on our 4th round of colds since the Fall started. I cry on a monthly basis when I feel like I’m over extended or if I’m just plain burnt. I told my husband last weekend that I quit, I beg my Mom to tell me why no one told me that this gig is so hard. I even said to my husband that if someone did tell me it was so hard I probably would have made different choices. Here is the thing though….It Does NOT Get Easier…..I Get BETTER.

After the day in the pink rocking chair, I got up each day, I formed a bond with my daughter in the best possible way that I could, I showed up, I continuously showed up. The day after my daughter plopped her cute little diaper butt on my lap I called for help….for the first time in 14 months I asked my husband to come home from work, I went to the doctors that week and I got on medication for PPD. After that warm August day, I continued to shush, sway and swaddle my son, I stayed home for 7 straight days, never leaving the house and I found what settled him, it may not have been the same things that calmed my daughter when she was an infant but I got to know him as an infant. I created that bond that was so needed. After that dreadful day in the foyer, I cry in front of my kids more. I talk when I’m frustrated with what I’m doing, if I’m upset with them, I hit that floor at least once a week so those little arms can embrace me because they do, every time. The day after my daughter decided her white and blue striped shirt was her favorite shirt, I started reading books, found websites about raising children’s confidence, sibling rivalry, positive parenting and I started writing more. I let go of my the girly girl that I knew my daughter wasn’t going to be and I just let her be.

I know there will still be days I cry at night, days of fighting with my kids until I’m physically and mentally expired, and there will still even be days when I long for my old life back but I also now know…..

It Does NOT Get Easier…..I Get BETTER.

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