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10 Drastic Differences Between Life Before and After Becoming A Mother

The Taboo Carnival

Welcome to the Taboo Carnival. Our topic this Spring is “I Miss My Life!” This post was written for inclusion in the quarterly Taboo Carnival hosted by Momma Jorje and Hybrid Rasta Mama. This month our participants reflect on life before and after motherhood and “missing” some of the aspects of life without children. Please read to the end to find a list of links to the other carnival participants.

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BT = Before Tiny
AT = After Tiny

BT: I could wake up whenever I darn well pleased on the weekends.
AT: “Mama, mama! I love you! Good morning! Let’s play.” (At 5:00am. Every. Single. Day.)

BT: I could get out the door to go virtually anywhere in 20 minutes or less.
AT: I need at least 2 hours’ notice to get out the door to go someplace within a 20 minute drive or less. I need two weeks’ notice to go anywhere further than that.

BT: Grocery shopping took 30 minutes on a crowded day. If it took longer, that was by choice. There was never any crying involved.
AT: Grocery shopping takes at least an hour with Tiny in tow. There is at least one meltdown – mine. There might be additional meltdowns – Tiny’s. Things mysteriously find their way into the cart. I have to explain why we are not buying said mystery items. Possibly another meltdown.

BT: I could stay up late and not have to worry about the repercussions of being tired the next day.
AT: If I stay up late, I have no one to blame but myself when Tiny wants to run marathons and engage is a three hour game of chase for which I have no energy.

BT: I could go out with friends, focus on the conversation, or focus on whatever the heck I wanted to.
AT: I can go out with friends but have no idea what the conversation is about because I am too busy running after a distracted Tiny.

BT: I could read a novel in a couple of hours.
AT: What is a novel?

BT: Cooking dinner = cooking dinner.
AT: Cooking dinner = attempting to cook while including a pint-sized sous chef who enjoys the art of culinary mess making much more than actual cooking. When bored with culinary mess making, the pint-size sous chef then wraps herself around my legs, grumbling about being bored and wanting a playmate. Something goes awry with dinner and Rasta Daddy walks in complaining about strange odors coming from the oven. Dinner is finally served and while tasty, quite ugly in presentation.

BT: I could successfully wash, dry, and fold a week’s worth of laundry in four hours on one day.
AT: I successfully wash two loads of laundry per day. I sometimes remember to put it in the dryer. Sometimes I forget. So I wash it again. If and when everything gets dried, it may or may not make it out of the dryer in a timely manner. Said laundry eventually finds a home. Usually it just makes a continuous cycle from the washer, to the dryer, to the laundry basket, to our body, and back in the washer.

BT: When I went to the bathroom, to do anything, I was alone.
AT: When I go to the bathroom, to do anything, I am never alone. There is always a little one in the shower or bath with me, helping me brush my teeth, sitting on my lap while I pee (not joking), or helping me attempt to make myself look like I didn’t just roll out of bed.

BT: I could do anything I wanted, whenever I wanted, however I wanted without having to think of anyone other than myself.
AT: Everything I do is with purpose and intention. I choose my words carefully. I model behaviors I would like Tiny to embrace. I see the world through the lens of a developing human being. I worry more. I play more. I stress out more. But I love more and harder than I ever knew was possible.

You might read this list and think – wow! This mama is full of complaints about motherhood. But really, I am not. Not at all.

Sure, having a child slows you down. Waaaaaay down! But it should. Children do not need to be thrown into the rat race of life. I swear on everything I hold dear, that children are gifted to us as a means of getting us harried and overscheduled humans to take a breath and really get back to simplicity.

Do I sometimes envy my childless friends or miss my pre-mama days? Yeah. Not gonna lie. There are moments when I think back to life before Tiny and reminisce about how much easier things were. (Like taking a pee by myself!) But then I look at that sweet face and a flood of love so powerful overtakes me. And I know, deep in my bones, that there is nothing, nothing in this world that would make me ever want to turn back time and live life without my little sidekick.

Becoming a mother flipped my world upside down and stretched me to my outer limits. But I wouldn’t have it any other way!

How about you? Ever miss our pre-child life? Envious of friends without children? Do share!

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Visit Momma Jorje and Hybrid Rasta Mama to find out how you can participate in the next Taboo Carnival! Enjoy the posts from this month’s Carnival participants!

 
  • 10 Drastic Differences Between Life Before and After Becoming A Mother — Jennifer at Hybrid Rasta Mama compares her life before and after becoming a mother and muses on why it is pretty incredible despite never having a moment alone.
  • Sometimes — ANonyMous @ Radical Ramblings reflects on the things she misses about being childless, despite the fact she wouldn’t change her decision to become a mother for anything.
  • The Baby Moon is Over — Mercedes at Project Procrastinot remembers her babymoon and misses the simplicity of being a wife before children.
     
  • Everyone Misses Sleep — Jorje of Momma Jorje misses the same things that most moms miss, but with some little quircks…
  • I miss my life, but not as much as I love this one. — Cara of CarasJeans reflects on how she copes with the difficult and selfless, yet profoundly rewarding, task of raising Irish twins in her young 20′s.
  • I miss the life that never was. — Amy at Anktangle doesn’t pine for days and years past, but she does miss the life she thought she would have when she became a mother.
     

Comments

  1. This is lovely. I love your point about how children slow us down. That’s so true. And I think that’s ultimately good for us, even if it’s hard at the time.

  2. I wish my laundry skills were half as good as yours!! Laundry is not one of my strengths. To me, this list does not read like complaining, just acknowledging! I do miss my life pre-babies but wouldn’t change anything. I’m not really jealous of childless friends, and though I love my twins dearly, sometimes I’m envious of those with “singletons” thinking they must have it so easy! But I know they have their own challenges.

  3. I could relate to pretty much your entire list! I agree that a lot of the shift of adjusting to parenthood is simply (but not easily!) about adjusting to the drastically different pace of life. It’s slower, more intentional, more complicated… and more joyful and rich at the same time.

  4. It’s the having to join me in the shower that kills me. Who knew that trying to wash my hair could be so stressful. Little man is trying to pull up and climb in a wet, tiled, tiny room while being underfoot. The good news is that I can justify not shaving by telling myself that I’m keep using both safe and sane by not adding a razor to the mix :)

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  1. [...] 10 Drastic Differences Between Life Before and After Becoming A Mother — Jennifer at Hybrid Rasta Mama compares her life before and after becoming a mother and muses on why it is pretty incredible despite never having a moment alone. [...]

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