Monday, April 22, 2013

Parenting: The Hardest Best Job Ever

Motherhood can be hectic. It can be super hard, yet the most amazing thing ever. I've had days where I just want to go hide under the covers and not come out for three days (hey, I'd get caught up on sleep too). I've also had days that are so amazingly close to perfect, I'm in awe.

Moms (and dads) have the best job ever. Parenting is also the most challenging job ever. You are raising a human. A soul that will one day be a functioning part of society. The morals you instill in them, the example you lead, the things you say, mold and form them. Your words of encouragement or discouragement become a part of who they are. That's a pretty big deal.

And this child, is so so wonderful.  They are a part of you, whether they grew in your belly or they grew in your heart til they could come to you. You have more connection to this "job" than any other you could work for.

I look at my daughter this morning and I have so much love for her. My heart swells and aches inside me with the love I have for her. She is so sweet and lovely. Her huge grins, her baby giggles. I love being her mom.

In the morning she is the happiest baby ever. Well, she is usually pretty smiley and happy, but when she's well rested more-so than ever. On the days that are especially long, or the days she just refuses to nap, but supper time I am totally frazzled. I cannot wait for her to go to bed. And then when she is, I miss her wrinkly eyes and toothy grins, and her adorable smell, and I feel crazy cause I miss her and want to squeeze her.

Internally, Exhausted Alyssa is saying "What's wrong with you?! Go have some tea and go to bed! Or read a book, you never get to do that anymore."

And then Crazy-In-Love Mom Alyssa says back "But she smells so good, and I want to cuddle."

It's an inner battle haha. Cause moms are just crazy about their kids.

Right now, Bree is in her Bumbo seat  playing with a stuffed pig, periodically looking up to see if I'm paying attention; whining if I'm not, grinning if she catches my eye.

It's been a good day so far. She has watched Mickey Mouse Clubhouse (second favorite after Tangled) while I brewed some coffee. I listened to her squeals as I poured my creamer into my mug, which soon turned to a cry when she realized I wasn't enjoying Mickey with her.

So, I enjoyed my coffee with a nursing baby who was extremely happy her mommy was holding her, with Mickey Mouse in the background.

I loved it.

A few days ago, I had a fussy teether who wouldn't let me put her down to pee, let alone unpack the tons of boxes we still have around the house. I didn't get to eat til my husband came home from work, she didn't nap, cried all day, the house was a mess, and I wanted to pull my hair out. I tried going on the computer and she ripped the space bar off the keyboard (Justin, if you read this, I promptly fixed it!)

I yelled in exasperation. I felt like a horrible mom. But, that happens sometimes, and it's okay. We can't beat ourselves up for mistakes or frustration. When Bree looked at me in shock I immediately picked her up (I was crying this time) and we cuddled in bed with boobie milk and Once Upon A Time til Daddy came home.

I am a new mom, but what I am learning in my current season of parenthood, is this. The house will not always be perfect. The house will rarely be perfect. Or never, you know. And it is OKAY.

I get extremely frustrated with myself when I don't get enough done at home. But in retrospect, I'd rather have held my baby when she needed me, than folded all the laundry in one sitting with a screaming infant who is wondering why mommy isn't helping her.

Being a mommy is really hard some days, easier on others, but is always wonderful. Even on days when the baby won't stop crying, or you didn't get anything done, all that matters is the baby knew her/his mommy was there to comfort him. (for more on my take on Cry It Out click here).

When I was pregnant everyone told me their horror stories of birth and parenting. Why do people do that?! So frustrating. Let me say this, and can be hard. Some days are the hardest you'll know, but... it's totally worth it, because it's for this tiny being you love more than words can express.

I gave birth, at home, without drugs. Hardest thing I have ever done, but so rewarding. I was determined to breastfeed; it was hard not going to lie. But we pressed on, got through it, and now it's a breeze, we love it, and its a totally blessing (health wise, emotion wise, bond wise) for both of us. The days before "sleeping through the night" (which ps, they'll do in their own time, every baby is different, don't rush!) were super hard. But so worth it.

As our children get older, we teach them about the world, how to love others, how to love themselves. It starts early. I'm definitely still working on that. I need to lead by example. And it is a definite challenge. But I do it for her. This amazing sweetheart I love more than myself.

When I hear 14 year olds say how much they want to have a baby, I totally am that person that tells them how hard it is. It changes your lifestyle, and it's a delusion to think it won't. I want kids to be able to enjoy their childhood/teen years. Yet, if a 14 year old came to me telling me she was pregnant, I'd support her, inform her, and tell her the challenges are worth it. Just love, educate yourself, don't be yourself up if you've done something wrong. Make it right, do better next time. And remember, you can NEVER hold them too much.

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