More Than Just a Mom - Life as Mrs. Wilson

01 September, 2017

More Than Just a Mom

I always knew that becoming a mom would mean a lot of sacrifice, a lot of selflessness, and a lot of hard work. What I didn't know, however, is how easy it would be to lose myself in that role.

10 months doesn't seem like a long time, but I look at the person I was just shy of a year ago, and I hardly recognize her at all. She's not who I am now, and I'm okay with that. But for a long time, I really wasn't.

As hard as it is to admit, I really mourned my old life and who I was before motherhood for those first few months after having my baby. I would see all of my friends without kids and envy the freedom they had. I missed when that life was mine, and struggled to embrace the new chapter of life I was in. But most of all, I envied their sense of purpose and their sense of self that I no longer had.

I think what a lot of people don't realize is that being a mom isn't just physically tiring, it brings on a whole new level of emotional exhaustion too. The moment you become a parent, it feels like your whole world is different. You're navigating this new chapter of life and, at least in my case, you forget who you were even the day before.

For what felt like the longest time, I just couldn't figure out who I was outside of being a mom. I struggled so hard with this sudden loss of identity.

Through the sleepless nights and the days that felt like years, it was hard to feel a sense of purpose outside of motherhood.

I couldn't seem to remember what I enjoyed in life anymore. I was so consumed in the mundane tasks that come with being a stay at home mom that I stopped taking care of myself, and just forgot myself altogether.

I'm not sure if every mom experiences this loss of self identity, but I know I sure did. And when I was in the thick of my postpartum depression and anxiety, I really felt that loss at an even deeper level.

I truly and firmly believe that motherhood will always be my greatest calling in life, but it has been hard to remember that it isn't my only calling. It's been hard to remember that I am more than just Conrad's mom.

It took me a long time to put together the pieces of who I am again. I think I was trying so hard to fight change that I forgot that it's okay to not be the same person you were a year ago, or a month ago, or even a day ago. And I think that's the beauty of life, that we have this opportunity to change and grow every single day.

As I explored new hobbies and met new people, I began to see those gaps in my identity start to fill back up again. And not all with the pieces of who I once was.

I think it's important to note how dearly I love being a mom and that I would never take that role for granted. But as my son grows up, I want him to remember me for more than just being a mom. I want him to see that I still have passions and hobbies and so many more things that I love dearly.

I want him to see that I am still passionate about volleyball even after all these years and all the injuries. I want him to know that I love to write. I want him to see that I care about people, and that I want to bring peace to this world. I want him to see that I love photography and design and I want him to see even the silly things like loving grocery shopping, and lemonade, and listening to podcasts every morning.

I want him to know that I am so much more than just a mom. I will always be his protector, his number one supporter, and his friend, and I will also be more than just those things.

Being a mom is such a tricky balance between caring for yourself and caring for others, but once you can establish your own sense of purpose and identity again, things seem to fall into place with a lot more ease.

Being a mom is my greatest blessing, but it's not my only one. And how thankful I am to finally realize that.

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