This post is for all moms, Dads that have to be moms too, furry moms, to the moms that sadly are no longer with us. Its a different type of Mother Days Sunday this year and last, but just know people are thinking of you all, so take care and stay safe.
Here’s a topic I have no authority to talk about…being a mom.
Kids are a part of my future. I know I want kids of my own. For now, I’m very content just being fabulous fun, aunty Eryn. But sometimes, when my friends announce their pregnancy, I can’t help but think of how great it would be if we had kids around the same age, who could grow up together. I imagine how my future kids would look and how they’d behave. Would they be like me-smart yet lack self-confidence? Maybe they’ll take after their hypothetical father?
Pregnancy was never included in my fantasy of having children. And now, I don’t think I ever want to experience after what I got to witness. I was living with my friend during her entire pregnancy. It wasn’t what I expected. I assumed she’d eat what she want when she wanted and gain weight; no one would say anything about it.
If only the reality were that perfect. Instead, My friend, Yara, suffered from hyperemesis gravidarum. It’s severe morning sickness. It’s worse than morning sickness. She was sick all nine months, and no matter what I did, nothing helped. The idea of eating made her nauseous, and throwing up was a killer. I will never forget how scary it was the first time Yara was dehydrated. The way she described it as “my throat was so raw.” I mean, I can imagine it feeling raw Yara, you threw up blood. Blood! Can you believe that for all nine months?
She took medication for nausea and continuously had to go to the hospital to get an iv. She got poked so many times. It was terrible. She started wearing long sleeves to cover up her arms so people wouldn’t think she was an addict. By week 40, it was like she was dying a slow, painful death. It didn’t help that everyone had a “cure.” I hate that everyone has advice or tips for you, no matter the problem. It was even more annoying because HG is not typical morning sickness. Regular morning sickness doesn’t send you to the ER for fluids.
As crazy as it sounds, we would do it all over again. I never understood loving someone so intensely until I held David. The moment his skin touched mine, the world stopped. It’s something that doesn’t last forever, but it was good while it lasted. There was a snap in my brain right after and reconnected with David being the center of my universe.
He was a quiet baby, which was a nightmare of its own. All my friends who had kids complained about the constant crying, and we complained because the baby was too quiet. I was a little insensitive and assumed something was wrong with him. Yara and I worried ourselves silly with different possibilities. My mind went to the worst. I would always ask the pediatrician what to look for if it was something like autism or apraxia? I consistently went online and searched for answers, not the smartest move on my part. We were first-time parents who knew nothing about babies.
But I can’t talk about being a parent and pregnancy when I never experienced it for myself. I have no authority on this topic. I’m not his parent.
The first year alone was the hardest parenting I’ve ever experienced. We took it one day at a time. Our parenting failures hurt and even caused tears to stream down my cheeks. I didn’t know how to be a parent, and he wasn’t my baby. I feel bad that now I’m not part of their lives. we talked for the first time in a while today and Yara and I joked that David now has two deadbeat dads. But I think my not being there hurts the most.
Unfortunately, I have no tricks up my sleeve to all my expecting mothers and no magic spells to share with you. I’ve dealt with my share of meltdowns and tantrums. I had to be the bad guy and make sure the rules got followed. It will be hard, and it will be stressful, and you will want to give up, but you can’t. Keep pushing through the rough days. Trust me, I know it’s hard, but being a parent is worth it. I remember this one time we had a terrible day, and as I put David to bed, he grabbed my hand and said: “I love you, momma-two.” It was all I needed to know a good or bad day that everything would be okay. My advice is to hold on to the little moments; soon, they get too old for cuddles and bedtime stories.
To you, single parents out there, you are doing your best. I honestly believe that. I don’t care what Karen from two houses down has to say about you and your parenting style. It is so hard being a single parent, even if you have support. It can be overwhelming, but I am here for you. I try to write to everyone who messages me. Either as an individual or a group. If you need to vent, cry, to be reassured, I am here for you.
To the parents who feel like they are failures, you are doing great. The fears, joys, and concerns you experience during parenthood make you a better parent. Parenthood is an exhausting and messy job that never ends. So stop comparing yourself to those moms you see on social media whose lives look like peaches and cream.
Remember, we are all different and experience different things. No one is a perfect parent, and we are all stressed; some just have a better way of hiding it. It’s easy to believe that you are a failure as a parent when you are tired and stressed. I used to tell myself I didn’t handle a situation well. Know that it’s not about how well you handle a situation. Hard is hard. You don’t fail at parenting because you raise your voice, cried that day, or didn’t clean.
Bad days happen, yelling happens. It’s what you do after that matters. First, calm down and allow your child to calm down. Then apologize. We all make mistakes, and sincere apologies are essential to repair any relationship. The best way to teach your child is to practice that. After you apologize, discuss what happened. Allow your child to express their emotions and don’t dismiss them. We always want someone to validate our feelings. Children aren’t any different, even if they don’t know it yet. I always end a lousy day with affection.
You are doing great, and everyone screws up.
One thought on “Parenthood”
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