When I first started this blog I sort of subtitled it “I didn’t know what I didn’t know”
I have been reading a lot of things lately about people that take issue with parents who are talking openly about the chaos that is having a family with small children. They correctly state that it was their choice to have a family. And of course, they are right. Mike and I absolutely made a thoughtful and as well timed a decision as we possibly could.
And let me be clear, being a mom is the most fun I have ever had and it has made coming home every day an absolutely joy. There is nothing quite like having my little boy run towards me, arms wide open, sheer joy on his face, to come hug me. Watching him laugh and learn every day is the absolute best.
However, the thing is, when you decide to start a family you have no clue. No clue how tired the human body could possibly be. No clue how many things you could think about at once. Parenting is the most impossible to describe experience. I am not saying this on an intellectual level. I could convey, in my more thoughtful moments, what it is like to constantly think about your child in literally every action you take. How I now maneuver around my kitchen so my son doesn’t see the banana in my hand I am using for my morning smoothie. Or how I spent a good 20 minutes yesterday planning my journey home so I could pick up my prescription, while making it home on time to relieve Carolina. Or how I now put off going pee for hours because I sometimes forget.
How there are no steps I take any longer, whether they be work related, personal, health related, time related, familial, etc. that don’t tie back to my son.
I know I am not unique in this. This is not an Annie thing, this is a mommy thing. My entire day is wrapped up in my family and the constant planning that having a young child requires.
But here is the thing. I had NO FRICKING IDEA before this what that actually meant. I thought I was busy, which I was, sort of. I thought I was tired, which I could be, kind of. But man, this is different. My brain does not quiet down. I can wake at 3am and without missing a beat it can pick up where it left off at 10pm. Like, I wake up in middle of sentence constantly
This is the same as being in labor. I thought I had felt pain, but ohhhhhh boy. Ha ha ha ha ha ha. Don’t worry I am not going into detail here, but you just don’t have a clue until it happens.
And that newborn tired you feel in the beginning. That is unbelievable. Here is this miracle that you are supposed to love unconditionally but you cannot even see straight because your body is recovering from labor and your hormones are off the Richter scale in fluctuations and your child thinks 12am is 12pm and oh my god you are never going to sleep more than 3 hours in a row ever ever again, this is how you are going to die.
So I would simply say to those that are getting a bit defensive towards parents who seem to be complaining, they probably aren’t. I think we are just shocked. Shocked at the fact that we are still alive. That our kid is basically in one piece. Shocked that my employer still keeps me employed and I still seem to do ok at my career. Frankly, it is a complete surprise that I am completely clothed with matching shoes most days. And what is the most surprising? Is that I really don’t care about the chaos because I didn’t know I could love someone as much as I love Ben.