Pregnancy was no easy task for me, body or soul. Emotionally, physically, in every way it was exhausting and uncomfortable. I was so naïve to motherhood and pregnancy. I thought I was ready, I thought I got it. But if you're a mom you know now, you don't get it till you’re there-the only time you truly understand being a mom, is when you ARE a mom. If I could talk to my pregnant self I would tell her this:
Dear pregnant self,
Even though you are tired, even though you are sick, you are so lucky to be where you are. You are so blessed to be growing your family on your terms. I know you can't wait to get that baby out! I know you hate the way you look and feel. But if I told you one day you would miss this, would you believe me? What if I told you that someday-sooner than you think, you will wish more than anything you could be as big, uncomfortable, and naive as you are right now. You will wish you had reveled in this season of pregnancy more-you will miss the misery, because you will long for the joy and wonder it brought with it. Pregnancy is a gift, a gift you don’t even understand how lucky you are to receive yet. But even beyond pregnancy, you are about to embark on motherhood. Something that is going to change you in ways you cannot even imagine.
If only you knew what was to come. If only you knew that all the parenting books, all the baby gear in the world won't prepare you for motherhood. There is nothing that can prepare you for what is coming. You think you are in control picking out the name, the nursery, the stroller, the toys. You will spend countless hours trying to prepare, studying up on all the latest parenting advice, stocking up on the newest products. Even once he arrives you will think you are in control-you are not. Your son will remind you of this each and every day. But would you believe me if I told you making mistakes is the best way to learn? The mistakes you will make as a mother are endless-and they should be. The best thing you can do for your baby is to constantly learn, constantly improve and evolve with them. So let go, make mistakes, and don’t judge yourself for them.
You won't be a perfect mom, you won't always be patient, kindness won't always be your first reaction. Motherhood is more difficult that you could ever understand now-and simultaneously more beautiful. Every day will push you to your limits, you will learn things about yourself you never knew-good and bad. There will be moments filled with anger, anxiety, and even sadness. You will want to give up more than once. But you will find a part of yourself you always hoped was there-just under the service. A part of yourself that is stronger, kinder, more patient, and braver than you could ever be before becoming a mother. You will face things that now seem impossible, and you will prevail. Motherhood is not a Pinterest board-motherhood is real, it's raw, it's scary, and it's beautiful. Its not what you think, it’s better!
You will learn the hard way that perfection is not the goal, and if you try to attain that you will crumble trying. What if I told you none of this mattered. None of the crippling fear and anxiety, or the mistakes matter! You will be scared every day at the overwhelming reality of being a mother. You will question if you can be the mother your son deserves every day. But YOU, you are an amazing mother. Yes, you have yelled, you've made choices you regret, but your love for your child is undeniable and unwavering. You have given your entire self to motherhood-at times it consumes you. You will be the kind of mother who is always there. Your child comes to you when he needs love or reassurance. You are his friend, but also his teacher. I know that you are wondering what kind of mother you will be.
You've set such high hopes for yourself to be the best mom out there. You won't be the best mom, you won't know some secret moms before you didn't know, and you won't somehow be a better mom than your friends and family. BUT-you will be THE BEST mom for your family and your child. Your son will need you, and you will be there. Each and every day, from the moment you wake up to the moment you sleep you will be there. You are the very best thing for your son, and even tho you will likely doubt yourself every day-you are enough. You will always be enough. Motherhood is not for the weak hearted, it's tough. But YOU can and will do it-you will be even better than the mom you hoped you would become.