Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Hind sight on motherhood may be 20/20, but I wear glasses

One of the myths of motherhood is that we don't have time to think.  Nothing could be further from the truth. As a stay at home mom of four, I have nothing but time to think. I think about stuff when I am changing a severely poopie diaper, when I am making dinner, or when I'm trying to sleep at 3 am but am currently being entertained by my baby who wants to party.

I spend a lot of time pondering the outright myths of motherhood. The learning curve is steep, my friends, and the potholes in the road are many.  If I had to breakdown a few that I found particularly interesting, it would be these:

  1. Myth: Parenting is equal. Fact: Hell no, it's not - Even if I wasn't a control freak about my kids, which I am, parenting would not be equal. For one thing, I don't work and my husband does. Just for that very reason, we can't take equal care of the kids. I remember when I had my daughter, and I had just survived my first 3 day stretch alone with her while my husband went on a road trip for work. I was so grateful for the weekend, because I was exhausted, and I had an image in my head of handing her off and going to read a book. He'd bring her to me for feedings of course, but everything else would be up to him. When that didn't happen that weekend, or the next, or the next, the hair on the back of my neck started to stand up and my spidey sense began to tingle. I hadn't read a book for months by that point, my hair was so long I couldn't wait to lop it off, and I had lost all of my baby weight and then some because I basically thought more about sleeping than eating. Weekends were for 'family' time, not 'me' time. For the most part, this was ok, but it wasn't what I thought it was going to be.
  2. Myth: After a few weeks, you will sleep through the night. Fact: Not even close - My 4th child was a dream sleeper up until he was around 6 months old and really started to get teeth. He'd sleep for 7 hours in a row, where I'd wake up and be instantly frantic that he was ok. Now, he wakes up every hour on the hour and sometimes stays up from 3 am to 5 or 6 am just dozing, chatting, and wanting to play. It's gotten to the point where my head feels as though it could float away from my body, up and away, far into the clouds *falling asleep*. Where was I?
  3. Myth: Having two kids is the same as having one, or three is the same as two. Fact: LOL! - Seriously, I love this one. The only addage "What's one more?". One more = ONE MORE. Another child to tote around on your hip, another round of teething, crawling, walking, and sticking close to home for naps. One less hand I have to hold three other hands. The flip side of this is that I am so very very lucky to have four beautiful kids, and I get to experience first claps, kisses, and toddling again. That stuff is beautiful, and I am so grateful. But just for the record: one more is definitely one more and I'm outnumbered over here. 
 There are many, many more myths to explore, and so little time between naps and working and everything else that goes on. Suffice to say, reality for me is always better than what I made up in my head anyway.

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