Testimony: Delayed but not Denied
I often share playful posts about my motherhood experience, mainly because I'm partially delirious 89.78% of the time from sleep deprivation, yet my girls keep me entertained. There is never a dull moment and barely any down time. I can only imagine how people with twins, triplets, etc. keep it together. So, this post is going to be a bit different from the others. It's tough for me to express this one, but I must.
I love being a mom and wouldn't trade it. Although it has its tough moments, parenthood has shown me my strength that I didn't know existed in many ways. Three of my biggest lessons so far would probably be:
1. It will NEVER be perfect
Nothing in life ever is. It was much easier to trick myself into thinking things were on their way to perfect before children, because I set my own schedule, had my own routines.
Children will change that as they possess a special skill in wrench throwing. Trying to get a good night's rest? Here comes a child fussing for an hour past the set bed time, leaving you exhausted or sometimes sleeping as they do. Maybe they might throw in a little 4:30 am wake up...
Trying to leave the house on time? Here comes a child that misses the toilet or refuses to put on shoes. So, there are moments in life where you plan, but life plays out differently and that's OKAY! Which leads me to...
2. You need help! Use it!
With or without a partner, parenting is WORK, which is especially compounded by trying to maintain a career, entrepreneurial endeavors, or just feeling like a normal person. Oftentimes, especially nowadays some of us feel compelled to prove that we can do it all.
I'm "some of us"..."Some of us is me!"🙋🏾♀️
So I've ended up way past burnt out, when I could have leveraged my resources more wisely to keep myself well. When I finally did this, I found I was regaining energy to work on the things I didn't in the past, which leads me to my next point.
3. Don't procrastinate what you currently have energy for
The other character flaw I have, is once something is in my head it haunts me. I can't fully chill until I take care of it. (i.e. this post I'm writing in the middle of the night instead of capitalizing on the sleep I complain to you guys about 🤷🏽♀️) Anywho, since I know myself, I've learned to break down such tasks into more realistic goals and setting stop points where I can feel accomplished while still being kind to myself.
I feel like I've finally started accepting these lessons recently and it has brought so much to me, because I was stubborn and it messed me up a bit.
I had a career related certification that I was procrastinating for 5 years! Yes that is 2 years before my children were even born. Every year I told myself I would do it and found an excuse. After I had my first daughter, I said I would go for it. A year went by and I was pregnant again. It had gotten to the point where I thought I would never take the test and it would be a lost cause. But I recently took and passed the test in one shot. I wouldn't normally share this, but I was so overcome with joy because there were times when I felt trapped as a mommy. Not the kind where you no longer want your children, but trapped where you get so wrapped up in your children that you sometimes feel you've lost the other part of yourself that's not "Mommy" or "Daddy". I was afraid I would use my children as a crutch for why I didn't work towards some of my personal goals.
I am so grateful and blessed for the support system my husband and family provides and provided me with so I could stick to my studying schedule and ace this and become a Certified Anti Money Laundering Specialist.
There is an old saying that it takes a village to raise a child, but it is also knowing how to best use the help that will help you stay sane and succeed.
I'm just so happy and hopeful, and want to share some light and encouragement to all the moms, dads, people in general who may be going through a rough patch or feel like giving up on your goals. Know you're not alone. Identify where your true help lies and don't be afraid to use it.