It was at this time last year that I first discovered I was pregnant just one month after tying the knot with my husband. I remember feeling giddy and nervous about actually becoming a mother.
Will I know what to do? Will we be able to afford him or her? What if I drop my baby? (Yes, that was a real thought once the belly started to show.)
It wasn’t until I started living the day-to-day life of a parent that I realized the importance and the value of how motherhood was starting to change me.
- My priorities are more defined.
Before becoming a mother – I was focused on building my professional skill set and growing my career. As a Project Manager, I was the epitome of “corporate-talk, business jargon” by day and really struggled to shut my brain off by night. I’ve since then realized the pure joy that comes from simply being present and spending quality time with my family.
- I’m more conscious of my decisions.
Not to say that I used to live recklessly – but, I’ve become vigilant of decisions I make for our family and myself. Before becoming a mother – I would attend events that I didn’t want to wholeheartedly attend out of obligation or protection of another person’s feelings. There’s no benefit in doing that – mother or not.
- I received a confidence boost.
I’ve become an advocate for myself and more comfortable with meeting and talking to strangers. (Trust me – making friends as a new mom is like blind speed dating.) Also, when it comes to my husband or my child – I will tell it like it is and not care what the reaction or response is from the other end.
- I spend more time enjoying a silent moment.
These are few and far between – but, when I get a moment to be still, I embrace it. Gone are the days of being an overly busy career-woman who never takes time for herself. In fact, one of my non-negotiable nightly rituals is to enjoy a cup of tea after putting Leo to bed.
- Patience is a virtue.
Truth be told – I used to be one of the most impatient people this side of the East Coast. Having a child forces you to have patience. As a new mother, you don’t always know why your baby is crying. Our children rely on us to show them the ways of the world. We have to teach them basic skills – they’re fragile, vulnerable, and innocent. If you don’t have patience with yourself or your child as you start to navigate through motherhood – you’ll essentially lose your mind.
- I am less judgmental and more empathetic.
I shamefully admit that I was one of those people who looked at a crying baby in public and assumed there was something wrong with their parenting. I would look at other mothers while out-and-about and think to myself: I would never let my kid do that. Well – motherhood is a tough job… and, until you have your own kids, you won’t truly understand what you “won’t let your kid do.”
- No topic is off-limits in conversation.
Along with dignity, modesty goes out the window when you have a baby. I’ve been covered in all sorts of bodily fluids (my own and my child’s) so much so that talking about poop, drool, vomit, blood, pee, and vaginas just comes naturally.
- I have a zero-tolerance for nonsense with other adults.
Simply put – even if I wanted to engage in petty drama or dwell on trivial foolishness, I just don’t have the time, the mental space, or the physical energy to.
- I have a fear instilled in me that I never thought would ever exist.
Becoming a mother made me more fearful of the world – not because of the “bad” people who have a sole purpose to cause harm to another human being… but, because no matter what I do or how hard I try, I still am not able to protect Leo from everything.