I recently shared these words with my friend, a new mom. And, I gave her a supermom “cape”
Words do not begin to express the joy I feel to know that you are becoming a mommy. I am so excited to be on this journey with you. There are some things that I think you should know—sort of an initiation into mommyhood.
In the next phase of life, it’s about to get REAL crazy, a good crazy, BUT crazy none-the-less. Your world, no matter how little or huge you feel like your world may be changing it’s about to be flipped upside down and inside out! It’s supposed to happen that way. There’s something uniquely mysterious and beautiful when a woman shares and pours her blood, sweat, tears and heart into a little baby. But, your life will never ever be the same as it was. REJOICE though: It will be better, but it will be harder.
Moms often get fearful to let others know that we’re struggling. There are moments when you too might feel lonely, and inadequate like you didn’t receive any training despite the hours of babysitting and classes you may have taken.
Look around at the moms around you, REALLY look for a minute AND know this: You are a blessed woman. I know that you know that, but I hope you really let it sink in today. These women around you are all women who deeply care for you, love you, and truly will jump in the trenches for you. Most of us have gone through this transition. We have all felt overwhelmed and underpaid. And we’ve all compared ourselves to another mom or woman who seemed to have it “all together”.
Know that we don’t have it all together. We have all been there crying out of pure exhaustion—wishing for more normalcy. But, know also the things you are facing are not yours they are ours– being alone only makes it worse—so reach out when those moments come. Let these women encourage and strengthen you. Let these women challenge you and most importantly let these women HELP you. If it feels like your day to day life would burden someone or is “your problem” and burdensome for others (which is normal) know that it’s not.
You have continuously served and been there for me, I am certain all of these women, and in this short phase we all get to be here for you. Let us BLESS you in that way! Don’t be afraid to ask! Ask for anything: Five minutes for a shower, 20 minutes for a nap, a trip to the grocery store. Don’t feel like you have to be a hostess or be worried about your home, you don’t need to. We all know and understand the challenges we face. So invite these women to face them with you.
Also, Know this: YOU are capable, able, and were made to be a superhero mom. You have prepared well for this! While at times, it may seem like you are failing, you aren’t. Your kids will not hate you and most likely they will not remember this time of transition, because they are resilient. Do the best that you can, and just keep going You’ll figure it out quickly! Tomorrow is a NEW day, so no matter how hard or how bad today felt, there’s a fresh start tomorrow!
Also, know this: keep your expectations of your spouse and of your house and of your life low during this time. The higher the expectations the less of a sense of accomplishment happens over achieving the little things (which all accumulate to become mastery of big things). Allow little victories to come daily and celebrate them!
Also, know this—this is ironic, since I am giving you a lot of advice, but this may just be the most important. Just go with your gut. There is a ton and a ton of differing advice columns, parenting methods, childrearing ways, but just do what you do best. Focus on what feels right for you and your spouse and for the little baby you have. The people who write those or who will give their unwanted advice aren’t you or him or have your kids. Listen, but feel free to use or not to use at YOUR own will!
Lastly, I’ll say this: Remember to keep God as a primary source of your strength. Not only will he give you supernatural abilities (especially when your sleep deprived), but He will be a source of joy and peace in the midst of your chaos. It’s about to get harder to find time to meet with Him, but in the craziness of your life find 5 min here or there. I’ve always been a big time Bible reader, and in my phase right now, I’m fairly limited in that portion of my faith walk, but I’ve gotten really good at praying. I pray while I do chores, and while I cook dinner. Different phases of life develop different faith practices–so don’t be discouraged.
On days when you feel up to your elbows in poop (literally you may feel this way) and babies are crying and you are so exhausted that you are sitting up drinking coffee and falling asleep know that you have a tool—feel free to use it often. You can make it a daily aspect of your wardrobe—you will deserve it within the first 24 hours.
Love ya, and I’m praying for you daily (minute by minute, hour by hour, because I know the crazy mom world), Ash