Things I Wish I Knew Before Becoming A Mommy

before becoming a mother

I remember falling to my knees and breaking into sobs.

“I don’t know how to be a mommy,” I squeaked out.

I could tell my husband was trying so hard to contain his excitement because he didn’t want to upset me even more. He grabbed my face in his hands and said, “Baby, you are going to be a great mommy.”

You see, I had plans. We had made plans. We were going to be married for a few years before we started thinking about having children. Isn’t it funny how our plans rarely ever match up with God’s? His ways truly are higher than our ways! It’s not that I was against having children. I just wasn’t ready, or at least I thought I wasn’t. Everything that I thought was going to happen didn’t happen the way I thought. I look back and am so incredibly thankful that God decided for our family to start so soon. At the time, I didn’t know how much being pregnant with our oldest son would save me from myself.

(I’ll admit that I still feel guilty for how I reacted when I found out I was pregnant, because I think of all the beautiful women who struggle with infertility and it wrenches my heart!)

Don’t worry, the tears soon came to joy and I found myself reveling in the fact that I was going to be a mommy. A mommy! Years later, I am now a mommy to 3 boys, one girl on the way, and 3 beautiful heavenly babies! I feel so incredibly blessed that God would grant me this opportunity. I just pray that I don’t mess it up, though I already have several times, and I’m sure I will many more. Despite all the “help” books out there, motherhood doesn’t really come with a manual. Each child is unique and brings something new to the family table. I’ll admit that there are some things I wished I had known before I became a mother, because then maybe I could have been a little more prepared. Hmm . . . yeah . . . probably not. So, in light of mother’s day coming up, I thought I’d share some of those things I was not really prepared for.

~ Kids love being naked. I don’t get it. I can’t tell you how many times I am having to tell my boys to pull their pants up or stop running around naked! I thought I was going to escape this with our oldest because, for a while, he actually hated not having clothes on. Then, BAM, he’s streaking across the backyard in his birthday suit!

Babies have this incessant fascination with toilet paper. Okay, I should have known this one. There are centuries of photos with children sitting in piles of unrolled toilet paper. I guess I thought that my kids would never be curious about that roll of fluffy, soft stuff. HA! They don’t just unravel it, they eat it, stuff the toilet with it, shove it in their pants. Come on, boys! That’s precious money right there! One time, I found Joshua crawling through the house with one end of the toilet paper in a fist and the other end just happily unraveling as he crawled around. He made a delightful little trail throughout the house.

~ Bath time for the kids is bath time for mommy too. They love to splash, splash, splash! I confess, I’ve spent a lot of bath times hiding behind a towel or the shower curtain.

No matter how hard you try to protect them from everything, they will always find something to get in to. Our oldest has been notorious for this. He has caused us quite a few heart attack scares, like that time he ran over and touched the muffler of the lawn mower right after I finished mowing. Gah!

~ Postpartum depression is so very real! If you’ve been following my blog for some time, then you know the struggles I’ve gone through with depression and anxiety.

Sometimes people can be too quick to judge.

~ Mommy wars are real. Oh my goodness! This is something I was not prepared for AT ALL! I’m so thankful that society seems to be turning the corner as far as mothers not being so judgmental of each other goes. But, man, I never knew there were so many conflicting thoughts and opinions out there. Motherhood is stressful enough. Let’s not make it more difficult by throwing snide comments at each other.

The truth behind the shoulder fold-overs on onesies. Okay, WHY did I not know this with the first two kids?!! Whose been hiding the secrets?! I always thought the shoulder fold-overs were just for decoration. Nope! It’s so that if your baby has a blowout, you can fold those little things back and pull the onesie down instead of up over his head. Whoever came up with that idea was a GENIUS! I just wish I had known this little trick so much sooner. If you knew this long before having kids, shhhh, don’t tell me!

Grocery shopping would become a dreaded nightmare. I long and dream for the days when I can go grocery shopping all. by. myself. Alas, that doesn’t happen much. So, I’ve had to learn how to master grocery shopping with multiple children.

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Getting a shower would no longer be a daily thing. Let’s face it, we’re so busy with taking care of our kids that being able to shower every day just does not happen. Oh please tell me I’m not alone in this! (I share a few of my other confessions {here}.)

Eating a whole meal would become a treat. Either my meals are interrupted by poopy diaper changes or my kids are wanting to eat what’s on my plate. I don’t mind it, but I sure am in awe when I look at an empty plate and know that I ate it all by myself!

Motherhood is so rewarding. I think this is the biggest lesson I’ve been learning more and more each day. I never knew a heart could love so much and arms could be so full. Yes, there are many difficult days when I just want to cry. But, the good moments always always always outweigh the bad. My heart is full! I am so thankful!

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Happy Mother’s Day to all you beautiful mothers out there! Even if your babies are not in your arms, they are still in your hearts. You are still mothers. <3

What are some things that you wish you knew before becoming a mommy?

*Title photograph taken by Dana Bement Photography.

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You can find where I’m linking up {here}.

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  • MeandMySoldierMan

    Hahaha, the shoulder folds! I just found that out too. Who knew???

    Love this list. I guess I didn’t realize how much personality they’d have at such a young age. I was prepared for “blob stage” (I was looking forward to it, that part where all you do is feed, change, and snuggle them). Then suddenly she’s this tiny person with feelings and opinions and stuff. She can’t even walk, but she wants to go THAT WAY, RIGHT NOW! Wow!

    • Oh I know! I sometimes find myself wishing back the snuggly stage. Although, when she starts talking, it gets pretty funny. Exasperating but funny. lol!

  • Darlene Nemeth

    LOL One of granddaughters is just loving being naked. It is impossible to keep clothes on that child. And she just whips off her diaper and flings it. One minute she is fully dressed, the next time I see her she’s standing there naked chattering away with me and I’ll be like, holy cow child where are your clothes now?! Guests come over and they’re like, how are you sweetie. Oh – she’s naked! ahhhh. I sometimes wonder why we even get her dressed in the morning.

    • Oh my goodness! This literally made me laugh out loud! That is hilarious!!

  • The Everyday Mommy

    Hello, I saw your post on the let’s be friends blog hop and thought I’d drop on over. I never knew that about the onesies!! This is going to make explosive diapers sooo much easier to change!

    • I know, right?! Thankfully I found out before our next baby comes! 🙂

      • The Everyday Mommy

        Same here, it would have been such a pain to continue to struggle to get those dirty onesies of off the baby without getting any of the mess on it’s head.

  • Jenn p

    Great insights! thanks for linking up! #bloggersbrag

  • Elizabeth Joiner

    Toilet paper is all my child wants, nothing makes it a better night than having six rolls of toilet paper to run around with and eating it at the same time.

    liz @ sundays with sophie

    • Lol! I’m pretty sure they would love a toilet paper party every night! Too bad we have to wipe with it. (Though, I’ll be honest that I’ve re-rolled unraveled toilet paper and just brushed off the dust bunnies or whatever else might have latched on. Hey! No sense in wasting that precious money, right?)

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  • It’s unfortunate that postpartum depression doesn’t get more attention. I was terribly blue after my firstborn, but not as much with my second. I’ve often wondered if that was because I knew more about it with the second child. My pediatrician was the sweetest man and because he recognized it, I was able to get some much needed rest and feel better quicker. Thanks for including that in your post. It is indeed very real and more exposure might help moms to recognize it and not feel guilty for not being happier!

    • I greatly agree with you, Kim! I think the reason there isn’t as much exposure on it is due to many moms suffering in silence because they feel ashamed by the way they are feeling. They think that they should be so much happier and that something is seriously wrong with them. The thing is, there is a greater percentage of women who have suffered and are suffering from postpartum depression than even the statistics know. (Those doing statistical studies even say that they think a greater percentage of women suffer than what they know, because many women don’t want to admit that it’s something they are dealing with.) I’m so glad you had a pediatrician who was understanding. Unfortunately, it took me a while to get help because my doctor wouldn’t take me seriously about how serious my mental state really was. It took switching doctors and being firm before I finally started getting on the road to recovery. Thank you for being open and sharing your story with me! It always helps to know when you’re not alone (which is certainly how depression makes you feel; so isolating).

      • I’m so glad you found the recovery road, too! I wonder if it’s hereditary. I want to prepare my daughter.

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  • Jessica

    I wish that I had really, truly savored every single cup of coffee that I was able to drink while it was hot-or even warm, before having kids. 😉