There are so many changes that take place after you give birth and It literally hits you all at once.
Terese George - Rennie
I moved to the USA , from Trinidad 6 years ago with my eyes set on living that American dream. Becoming a wife and a mother was nowhere on my radar, especially the “mother” part. I was never the type of girl that dreamed of prince charming and fairy tale weddings, far less having kids. I thought i'll just be the “cool single Aunty T.” HA!
I got married and in true Caribbean parenting fashion , I was given a long list of what I needed to do to “keep my husband happy.” I got pregnant and I was given another list , this one was much longer than the first. Then I had my son and GOD HELP ME! I got all the unsolicited advice of how to raise him, bathe him, hold him , talk to him and even how to kiss him. Most of the advice,though unwanted ,was helpful. But in retrospect is wasn't what I think I needed. I NEEDED TO BE WARNED!!! Yes, I said warned.
The battle really begins after giving birth. Not the physical battle ( whew child that's another topic for another day) but the battle in digging through the rubble and finding yourself. I was not prepared for how lost you get after becoming a mother. I remember reaching out to one of my friends who had had her daughter the year before and she shared the same sentiments and challenges as I did. My only response to her was GIRL WHY DIDN'T YOU WARN ME? I was mad as all hell but at least I didn't feel crazy and alone anymore!
Many women are faced with identity crisis postpartum. We feel alone in this struggle because for some strange reason, it's one of the best kept secrets of motherhood. I was given advice on how to take care of my newborn son and my husband but not a single mention of how to take care of me. Do I regret having my son or do I hate my husband? Of course not! My love for them is unconditional. I am grateful for my miracle, my little bundle of joy. There are many positive trade offs.The joy my son brings me on a daily basis, the way my heart sings when I see him snuggling with Daddy - the sense of contentment and completeness of watching my family grow. But there are so many changes, physical and mental, that take place after you give birth and It literally hits you all at once. It leaves you gasping for air wondering how did I get here?
Now I’m eight months postpartum, my son is crawling and trying to walk and I’ve only just begun the tasking journey of figuring out who I am. It's scary how easy yet joyful it was to lose myself in motherhood. It humbled me. But now I need to get lost in something else that is only for me. Nothing would match up to the pure joy that motherhood brings but like everything in life there needs to be a balance.
If there is any advice I would give , unsolicited of course, is to take care of you. It's hard , especially with this new life that depends on you but you cannot be good to anyone if you aren't good to yourself. Take a little more time in the shower, eat an extra doubles, meditate, dance, sing, 'buss ah wine' and FOR THE LOVE OF GOD COMB YA DAM HAIR! Look in the mirror sooner than I did so you can be reminded of who you are. Don't lose yourself because you will be up at 3 am trying to find that person you once knew.