Nothing speeds up time faster then having children. One moment, we are sitting in our childhood bedrooms, anticipating tomorrow’s test, the next we are handed a little creature and thrusted into the life of parenthood. Our anxieties were once surviving high school and avoiding the mean girls, and now they are wrestling through diaper changes and our child’s health. It is strange what time does to us.
The first time I held my daughter after she was born, she was incredibly light, fragile and so tiny. I remember thinking how amazing it was that the little creature I had in my arms fit so perfectly in my belly. The fact that she started out as this small little spec, and suddenly she was on the outside, so beautiful and so very real. I remember being so afraid of dropping her. I got nervous when other people handled her. Even when my husband held her, I felt anxious. Spoiler: no one dropped her.
For me, the newborn stage was hard, but I still tried to soak her in as much as I could. I snuggled her close to my face, and I absorbed her baby smells. Her noises echoed in my ears. Her adorable Newborn clothes were big on her. She swam in them, and I was blown away by it. She loved being close to Mommy, the only time she would tolerate being put down was in her rock and play. She loved to eat. She ate a lot, and she grew fast. Before I knew it, she was wearing 0-3, then 3-6. She skipped 6-9 and went straight to 12 months. And she kept growing.
The word’s stung the second they rolled off your tongue, “but you are with her all day.” They affirmed my assumptions of your interpretation of my role. That you are unaware of my day to day routine as a stay at home mom. That because I am “home,” I must not be busy. That because I see our daughter all day, I have unlimited time to spend with her. That she doesn’t pull at my leg, begging for a moment of my time. That her whine for my attention doesn’t break my heart because I am not wrapped up in other things, like cleaning, preparing dinner, picking up the groceries, dropping off the dry cleaning, switching over the laundry.
Yes, I get to load my phone with pictures of all her firsts. I can easily drop what I am doing to engage in play. I can push these things off to the side and be with our daughter. A luxury I get to have and you can’t because you work. I understand that. But then all of these things wouldn’t get done.
My decision to be a stay at home mom was my own. It was a decision we both discussed and a choice I untimely made for our daughter. A choice that was mine to make. I understand that your job requires you to leave early and sometimes come home late. I understand that your days are jam packed with conference calls, meetings, emails, upon other things. I understand that you are busy, and even though you love spending time with your daughter, you don’t always get to. I understand that you work because you love your job and it supports our little family.
Yes, sometimes I get mad. Sometimes I complain that you come home late, and at times I selfishly make you feel guilty for being gone through out the day. Realistically I know your job is important, and I appreciate everything you do so that I can be “home” to raise our daughter. I understand that you are busy, but do you know that I am busy too?
A few weeks ago, while I was cooking dinner and washing the dishes, I looked on as you sat on the floor with our little girl. You tickled her, made funny noises, played with her blocks and talked with her. My heart smiled, watching you two, but it also ached. It ached because I could only think of the time I did not get to spend with her that day. I recalled her face pressed against the bathroom door gate, whining for me as I scrubbed the sink and toilet. How she cried for me to hold her while I was folding the laundry, how I told her no to playing with her train because we had to get ready to go grocery shopping. I was just too busy.
Feeling overwhelmed and frustrated at myself, I decided to skip the cleaning and the errands that day. I would spend time with our daughter. As I laid out my plain to you, I said, “I’m going to play with her all day, for once.”
And then it came. It just slipped out of your mouth, I am sure. I am sure you don’t truly believe that I sit around all day. I like to think that because I am a “Stay at home mom,” that I don’t do nothing all day. I dust the ceiling, I clean the floors, I fold and put away the laundry, I take the dog for a walk, I plan dinner for the week and pick up groceries. I sweep and wipe down, I organize and rearrange. I search for lost toys, I change diapers and wrestle on clothes. I make lunch and administer medication. I clean up poop, vomit, and pee. I run errands. I budget. I wipe teary eyes and calm tantrums. I orchestrate nap time and coordinate lunch time. I am a Stay At Home Mom, but I am busy.
Yes, I am learning to make time to sit with our daughter. My attention to her and play time is important. I know that, but so is cleaning the house and running errands. Sitting with our daughter and teaching her things like shapes and colors is necessary, but so is picking up the groceries and completing the to-list. Encouraging her to roll over, sit up, crawl, walk, and talk is crucial, but so is a safe and hazard free environment for her to grow up in.
Getting to watch every milestone is a blessing, and an opportunity I don’t take for granted. The decision I made to stay home was an important one for our family. It has it’s perks and it has it’s disadvantages. Yes, I am a Stay At Home Mom, but I am also busy, and like you, sometimes I don’t have as much time to spend with our daughter as I would like. Yes, her main caregiver is an important role, and expanding her mind and encouraging her development is an important task for that role. So I make time to be with her and play with her when I can, but like you, I have a full day packed with important tasks that I need to get done as well.
My concerns of wanting to spend more time with our daughter are legitimate. My desires to want more days on the floor with her are realistic. My frustrations of a packed schedule are real frustrations. Wanting to be the one who makes her giggle is a genuine desire. Yes, I am a stay at home mom, but I am busy too.
Messy Mama was born from the ashes of a chaotic attempt at motherhood.
Right from the beginning, from the complications of a long and difficult pregnancy, to the horrific experience during delivery. Right down to the struggle of trying to get my shit together for a tiny human that depended on me. Each part of it has been a crazy, exhausting, whirlwind of a beautiful mess. A full year after giving birth to my now sweet but salty toddler, I am finally embracing it.
You would think that by accepting my fate as the not so perfect homemaker, that I would drown into an abyss of dirty dishes, frustrated tears, and poop filled diapers. The truth is that it’s had the opposite effect. I did not plan to become Messy Mama, it just sort-of happened. It became a part of the new me, the mother that I am.
At first, it was extremely difficult. By the end of my baby’s third month of life, I was envious of all other mothers and frustrated with my experience. Selfishly, I believed I had been shafted from a glorious pregnancy and a memorable delivery.
While other pregnant women glowed, I hung over a toilet for most of the nine months. I couldn’t celebrate my pregnancy or enjoy it. I didn’t show off my bump, instead I spent most of my time in bed. I refused to be photographed. I was a sick, pregnant Mess.
My long and difficult pregnancy had me hoping for an “easy” delivery. Instead I got thirty hours of pure chaos and torture. The most precious moment of my daughters brand new life was the most horrific and traumatic moment of mine. At no point during my delivery did I feel like a Warrior Goddess. I was rolled out of the operating room a blubbering, disorderly Mess.
As the days crept into months, I found myself struggling to fit into my new role. I couldn’t keep up with the house hold chores, showers, or the motherly duties. I felt inadequate. Regardless of how hard I thought I had tried, I just couldn’t get it together. Motherhood was Messy and so was I; So very Messy.
Fast forward nine more months and I can’t help but be so incredibly proud of the mother I have become. As I follow my new toddler around, picking up after her disarray and Mess, I giggle at the destruction. I think about the irony of the last couple of years. How perfectly fitting it all is.
From the day she started exploring, she has been exceptionally curious. Never wanting to diminish her flame, I embrace it. I allow her to rip the books off the bookshelf, throw the DVD’s from their places, explore the cupboards until all the pots and pans, plastic ware and refrigerator magnets lay scattered throughout the kitchen and dining area. I let her rip the clothes from the drawers and throw her blocks around her bedroom and the living room. A representation of the path my little tornado has laid out before me since becoming her mom.
When I stopped fighting the Mess, everything became a little less Messy.
The more I embrace the mess, the less it has taken over me. The more I accept my anxiety, the easier it is to manage. The more I love the chaos of motherhood, the less resentful I become. Messy Mama has become Grateful Mama. Grateful for the little girl God has given me, and Grateful for the opportunity I have been given to be her mother. Grateful for my home and all the love I feel inside of it. Grateful for the body that carries it all. With gratitude, comes great love. A love that pushes me to want to be the type of woman my daughter looks up to. A woman who remains strong, regardless of her struggles. A woman who refuses to be swallowed by the chaos around her.
Now, I wake up with a little more motivation. I wake up with a little more intention. I wake up with hopes that I will be more of the roll model that I want my daughter to see. Yet, still a little bit of the perfectly, imperfect Mess because being imperfect is important too.
So yes, my house is a little cleaner and organized, I put on real pants more often, and my sloppy bun is a combed bun. I take my daughter on more memorable adventures because you only live once, and she gets to see how much I love my own body. But Messy is what she has made me, and there’s nothing wrong with that, so Messy is what I will be. A little less chaotic, but Messy Mama is here to stay. (Were you worried?) There’s so much more growing and cleaning that I need to do. For now, I’m Messy with a purpose, Messy with love. The best and Messiest role model I can be for the one who started it all. After all, I am her Messy Mama.
I’m not afraid to admit that I lost myself a little bit when I became a mother. I spent almost thirty years building myself into the woman I wanted to be. However, in a split second, I watched that woman fade into the background. On the day that she was born, my daughter flipped my world upside down. I am not the same person I was before I became a parent. It is a little depressing when I think about it, and at times, I am a bit envious of the wild, young woman that I use to be. The healthy physic, the perfect skin, the endless amounts of energy, and the adventurous outlook on life. When I look at the mirror, I see a different face. The image is a bit distorted, with the dark circles, and the uncombed hair. Yes, I miss her sometimes. Yet, I can’t help but love being a mom.
My life has changed dramatically, and my fierceness has been tamed by a bold little girl. I have met my match, and I am beyond grateful for that. I look down at my vibrant child, so full of life, and I think, “I get to be your Mom.”
I get to be the greatest female figure in her life. I get to be the one who helps guide her through her journey. I get to be the one who protects her, and the one who stands up for her. If being a Mom of a little girl doesn’t empower you as a woman, then what the hell does? I miss the woman I use to be, but nothing compares to the woman I have become. I owe all of that to my daughter.
My little girl has turned me into a stronger woman, and it is making me a better mom.
Yes, parenting is so hard. The minutes are long, and the days are too short. I long for some time to myself and being the main go to for my baby can be exhausting. I am still struggling to find my place as both a person and a parent, but I can’t help but be proud of who I am today. I truly am the best version of myself.
Do I love every moment? Absolutely not!
I could do without the late-night sleep battles, the screaming tantrums, the healthy food struggles, the diaper wars, and the mess. I could do without them, but it’s all a part of the bitter sweet package, isn’t it? My God, does it make you resilient. One day you’re overwhelmed and you’re struggling, and the next day you’re handling it! Being a mother has given me more courage than anything I have ever experienced. Even the darkest of days could not have prepared me for this. Parenthood is truly the greatest test of all time, and it is so fucking beautiful. How could I not love it?
Being a mother is scary and taking care of a child keeps you on your toes.
All my fears, before my baby arrived, have disappeared and seem irrelevant. Now, I am consumed by the fear that drives me to love, care, and protect my child. Ironically, I have found true strength in my fears because there is nothing I would not do to keep my child safe. Nothing scares me more than she does! Nothing!
I have never experienced a love like the love I have for my little baby. A connection that could never be explained in words. How much I wanted her! Everything we went through together, before she was born, and on the day that she was born. Everything we have experienced together this past year, and everything we are learning together a as new person and a new parent. How many emotions run through me as she grows. Pain in knowing that time is too short. Excitement in watching her blossom into a little individual. Fear in what is to come. Every single moment cherished, regardless of how tough or difficult. Through out all of that, I get to be the one who is right there with her.
Motherhood is not for the faint of heart. It is not easy, and it is most definitely not glamourous.
It takes an awful lot of everything you can muster up, out of your soul. Patience when you don’t have any left, love when you are angry, and courage when you are scared. It can be draining, and exhausting. Frustrating and infuriating. Frightening as hell! It is the most important job you will ever have, and it could turn you into the person you’ve always wanted to be.
My daughter is beautiful, bold, and so very emotional. She pushes me past my limits every single day! I love her for that, and I love that I get to be that person for her. I do! I get to be the one she reaches for. It’s me she wants when she calls out for “Mama,” and I’m the one she looks for in a crowded room. I am! Yes, it’s true, it may not always be this way. That’s okay, because no matter what, I will always be that person for her when she needs me to be. I get to be her Mom, and that, to me, is the greatest thing I could ever be.
*Disclaimer – I am not a professional and will not be accountable. My blogs are written from my own experiences and should not be taken literal.
*This work, along with it’s images, as well as other posts published by Messy Mama, are protected by copyright laws.
*This post contains affiliate links. For more information, please visit Messy Mama’s Disclaimer page.
Becoming a new parent is probably one of the greatest shifts that occur in your entire life time. You go from creating your own schedules outside of work, to managing your day around the needs and care of another human being. It is a dramatic change. Now, you’re struggling with finding time to eat, shower, and getting some time to yourself. Before, you could fill your free time with all of the things you wanted to accomplish. Now, most events require extensive planning. You struggle to work out, to clean, to keep yourself healthy and to have any free time at all.
Setting resolutions as a new parent may leave you feeling discouraged. How are you going to find time for that 2019 to do list? I’m here to tell you that you don’t have to put off those resolutions until next year. There is still a way to knock a few off this upcoming year. As I head into my first New Years as a Parent, I have some tips that may work for you.
If you are a new parent, and haven’t quite settled into your new role just yet, start with a few resolutions. Make a list and pick three that you desperately want to get to. You just went through a dramatic life change. Don’t overwhelm yourself with a long list of things you want to do, or expect to rebuild a whole new you. Focus on a few things and save the rest for next year. Slowly integrate these resolutions into your already new life and be consistent. Repetition will make those changes so much easier.
You don’t have to be a “go all out” meal planner to meal plan. As a new mom, I don’t have time to slice and dice, clean, and create. Most easy meals, however, are terrible for you. So what is an over worked and exhausted parent to do? Pre-cut and pre-packaged veggies are my thing. In the produce department, at the grocery store, there is a small section where veggies are cleaned, cut, and packaged by the supermarket employees. Make this your go to, and ta-da, meal planned! I can eat things that I normally would not if I had to slice and dice myself. I can trow some tofu or meat in to a pan, toss in some veggies and add rice and dinner is done.You can mix and match, add sliced veggies into a crock pot or steam them for a side.
If you are processing your own baby’s food, you can dump these veggies right into the food processor. Mix a way and throw extras into the freezer. You’re good to go, Mama.
For lunch, I love a good salad. During the weekend, I create a large bowl of my favorite mixed pre-packaged greens, pre-chopped veggies or fruits, and place everything into a large food container. Any protein left over from dinner that week, I can toss into my salad and I’ve got a complete and healthy lunch. Nailing it!
Left overs are great for quick lunch time heat ups. When I do make dinner, I’ll cook the entire portion of protein or wrapped veggies so that I purposely have left overs. When I am feeling something other than a salad, or the husband is working late, I just heat up and eat up. Now, if I can just get someone to wash the dishes! Anybody?
If one of your resolutions is to get back in shape, don’t feel discouraged because you can’t find time. Get an at home work out DVD you can throw on while the little one plays or naps. Whether its Zumba, Dance, Yoga or an extreme work out, find what ever works for you and cut out a few minutes and press play. Don’t forget the mat, but a comfortable carpet will work to. Can’t stand being inside? Go for a walk or run with the Baby Trend Expedition Jogger Stroller.
As a new parent you may still be trying to figure out organizing. If having a cleaner house is one of your resolutions, invest in some great storage. Baskets, bins, drawers, oh my! Get to pinning and put your creativity to the test. Head on over to your favorite Target and invest in some great storage and get your neat on!! Cleaning becomes a breeze when you have a place to toss everything right before company arrives.
After you organize your house, invest in a good planner, and organize your day. Yes, it is impossible to stick to schedules when you have kids. As your child grows, however, they will settle into different routines. After you recognize your child’s current routine, plan your day accordingly. Where can you fit in exercising, or meal planning. What day works best to organize or pick up. By creating a plan and working it into a schedule, you also create a “deadline.” By giving yourself a deadline or a weekly goal, you can accomplish tasks instead of continually putting them off.
What was your 2018 New Years Resolution? Did you achieve it? Let us know how you did it.
*This work, along with non-affiliated images, as well as other posts published by Messy Mama, are protected by copyright laws.
*Disclaimer – Statements made in this post are of my own opinions, views, and thoughts. I am not a professional and should not be regarded as such.
I would not recommend affiliated products that I don’t love and use myself. However, if you purchase a product and are not satisfied, any inquires must be done through Amazon or Target. Messy Mama does not guarantee satisfaction. Availability of all items may vary.
*This post contains affiliate links. For more information, please visit Messy Mama’s Disclaimer Page.
***(For more product information, click on images for Amazon links)***
The Holidays are here and we’re making our lists and we’re checking it twice.
Wondering what to get the mom’s in your life. Whether she’s your mom, a sister, a friend, co-worker, or maybe your wife. If she’s a mother, chances are, she’s probably exhausted and dying for a break. It doesn’t matter if she’s a new mom who hasn’t made time for herself, a mom drowning from PTA meetings, holiday parties and bake sales, or she’s been working extremely hard this year and doing all things mom on top of the already packed schedules. That poor girl needs more than cutesy cheese baskets, (unless it includes wine), jewelry she’ll never wear, or fancy food processors. Give her the gift of relaxation this year.
Here are some awesome gift ideas for the tired moms in your life who deserve a break this Holiday Season.
The Gift of Relaxation
If she’s into wine, then a good break may include her favorite glass of red or white. Opening wine bottles is a hassle, and who has time for broken corks anyway? Make her life a little easier with the Wine Enthusiast Electric Wine Opener. This magnificent tool also includes bottle stoppers and an aerator. Her days of battling with the corkscrew are over. Include her favorite bottle of wine, and a cute little glass to match her adorably sarcastic personality.
The Gift of Lounging
Let’s face it, sometimes Mama’s just need a nap. Give that tired Mama the gift of rest this year with a throw blanket. This blanket is cozy, warm and comes in so many colors so you can match it perfectly to her living room. Add a nice warm pair of socks and a movie or book and she’s all set to plant herself on the couch. Don’t forget to include undisturbed time for her as part of the gift and you’ve got yourself a Great Gifter of all Gifters award.
The Gift of Comfort
Putting on pants can be tough when you’re exhausted. Unfortunately, us mom’s don’t always get a free pass from looking how we feel. A nice comfortable pair of leggings with a warm winter sweater and a scarf takes us from Mess to looking our best in 5 seconds flat. Give mama the gift of comfort and get her a pair of these comfortable 90 degree leggings. They’re comfortable, stretchy and high-waisted which helps tuck away any potential insecurities.
The Gift of Energy
If she’s needing some extra energy, why not get her a bag of her favorite coffee beans with this simple and easy bean grinder for a fresh taste. Add in a cute cup and you’re rocking the gift giving. Look at you go, you’re so good at this.
The Gift of Restoration
Mom needs a little time to herself to freshen up. How about some face wash and nail polish. Add in her favorite scent and BB cream from Pacifica and she’s ready for the new week ahead. Check out some of these beauty products from Pacifica. They’re organic, animal cruelty free, and all containers are recycled. It’s a triple win here!
Most importantly, don’t forget to help out the mom’s in your life. Give her some extra love this Holiday season and let her know she’s appreciated. Make her Merry a little merrier and her Bright a little brighter.
*This work, along with non-affiliated images, as well as other posts published by Messy Mama, are protected by copyright laws.
*Disclaimer – Statements made in this post are of my own opinions, views, and thoughts. I am not a professional and should not be regarded as such. I would not recommend affiliated products that I don’t love and use myself. However, if you purchase a product and are not satisfied, any inquires must be done through Amazon. Messy Mama does not guarantee satisfaction.