Friday, September 16, 2016

How Motherhood Changed Me

They say becoming a parent will change you, and I used to think that was the most Captain-Obvious statement I had ever heard. Duh - We are adding an additional human to our lives. Changes like that are more obvious, but I am surprised at how motherhood changed me.

1. Priorities. I'll be honest, I've never been too fond of over-committing myself to activities, but I am now adamantly particular about how I spend my time. As a working mom, I see my daughter in the morning, for a few hours at night and on the weekends. Do you think I am going to want to carve out three weekend nights to do happy hour and network? No way, not at this stage. I want to be home with my family.

2. Finances. Before Eila, I would admit to you that I looked at my bank balance "as needed." It was not a habit I had. I knew I was fine. It isn't that having her immediately put us on tight budget, but it does make me more aware of how I spend. I think about things like savings accounts, retirement plans and building credit. I look for places where I can cut back. I'm more interested in donating clothes and editing my closet down than I am accumulating more things. I am by no means fully reformed, but I have come a long way in how I view money.

3. Fitness. My motivations for fitness before Eila were vanity and Diabetes. My motivation for fitness now is strength. Eila is heavy! I don't know if the C-Section set me back a few steps, but my lower back gets very fatigued when I hold the baby. I make a point to do it more often and for longer durations to build it all back up. I want to be able to hold her without complaining as though I am 85.

4. Worries. I have never been Type A or a particularly worrisome person and, for the most part, I have carried that into motherhood. But I cannot tell you how anxious I get if I even think Eila is in danger. We drove through some nasty weather last weekend, and I thought my heart was going to beat out of my chest. When she got a bad cough, I wanted her in our room just so I knew she was breathing. Maybe those are things that subside with time, but man...it's a crazy love. What I don't worry about anymore is whether her room looks perfect or she has the latest and greatest baby clothes brand. Don't get it twisted, I love baby clothes. And I melt when she looks cute in her outfits. But I am going to be honest, we spend a lot of time hanging out in a diaper when we are home. Guess what? My hatred for laundry is greater than my desire for E to look cute while she sits at home.

5. Politics. I've beat this one to death, but I care more about the world which I want her to inherit than the world that gives the most stuff. I want people to be nice and stop killing each other. I want her schools to be great, but I want all kids' schools to be great! It's so much less about the other stuff to me now and more about how we treat humans and raise the next generations to treat humans. Pretty simple stuff with extremely complicated political solutions.

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