3 things that surprised me about becoming a mom
Becoming a mom is magical!!!!
Okay now the 100% truth - it is also scary as hell! I mean, how can it not be? You are responsible for another life!
And there is no rule book. Sure, there are many great resources...in the age of google, literally anything can be searched!
But some could even argue that this actually makes parenting more difficult. I mean try googling "4 month baby with a fever"! Yikes I am about to rush him to the nearest emergency room because of what I am reading.
Seriously though, parenting has it's surprises. And I have been reflecting on this over the past week and discovered that despite all the advice you get and books you read before the baby is born, there are still a few things that came as a surprise.
So I decided to share my top 3 with you.
There really is a secret mom club!
Many people warned me that once you become a mom you will enter this secret club full of other mamas. A place where you are allowed to share all things baby that your single and childless friends should never be exposed to.
And yes these types of mom groups do exist. But when I refer to a secret moms club, I am not just talking about moms that get together to have play dates with their children and talk about stuff like: "is my son's poop normal?" (Yes that really does happen!)
BTW if you are ever looking to start or join a moms club, I highly recommend reading this post by Scary Mommy: The 10 Rules of Moms Club.
The moms club that I am referring to are the random winks and nods you get from other moms that indirectly say "yep, I've been there...keep going mama...you're doing a kick ass job!"
That's right ladies, being a mom is tough and other mamas know that we are doing the best we can. So we ban together to support and encourage one another!
And the most surprising part of this is how even more powerful our senses become as a mom! So many mamas have taken the time to lend a hand because they sensed I was struggling and could use help.
For example, when Aiden (our son) came down with his first infection at 4 months, I was home alone and overwhelmed with fear.
Between the worry and the cluster feeding, I was literally getting no sleep. So of course I was exhausted and on the brink of a melt down.
Eventually I made an appointment with our pediatrician. On that day, I arrived early so I could quickly grab a bite next door at a cafe. As I was waiting for my salad, I heard this massive explosion in my sons diaper!
Unfortunately, there was no changing table in the bathroom so I did what every mom would do in this situation...I put him on the table in the cafe and took care of his dirty business!
Yes some people stared at me in horror shaking their head. But there was this kind woman next to me who stood up and offered to help me. She proceeded to tell me she is a mom of a toddler and remembers vividly the diaper days and odd places she had to change her baby.
We had a good laugh, exchanged numbers and went our separate ways. Ladies, this is the powerful moms club I'm talking about. Isn't it truly amazing? It's like finding a bunch of angels who are looking out for you!
There aren't enough baby friendly establishments in LA!!
Seriously I am completely surprised that in Los Angeles there is a total lack of attention to the needs of babies and their parents!
After living in NYC for a little over a decade, it was expected that you would live in tight spaces, restaurants would have small bathrooms and the subway would smell like pee half the time. These are things you get used to and learn to ignore or accept.
So in NYC I could image a lack of baby friendly places, but in LA? Where does everyone take their children? Or is this not considered modern practice in this town? Is it better to leave them home with the nanny?
Let's discuss restaurants. I can only think of a handful that I have been to which actually have a changing station in the bathroom. Even worse, my husband can only remember one place (thank you Au Fudge) where there was a station in the men's room! What about the men? How do they change their babies diapers? Or is that only a women's job?
Furthermore, in a city with so much space, how come there is no place for the stroller? Yes I am expecting the stroller to accompany me! The stroller is not a bike that can be kept outside while I run my errands. How do you accommodate wheel chairs? And why do dogs get better attention than babies?
Needless to say I could go on about this topic, but for the sake of keeping it short and simple: LA get your act together and build more kid friendly establishments!
Your body is still not yours....and maybe never will be!
We all hear that your body goes through a ton of changes during and after pregnancy but I am not convinced we really listen! Maybe we only hear certain things that we can accept or at least understand...like your clothes will fit differently, your breasts will be super engorged, you will experience drastic hair loss, and probably forget where you put your keys a million times!
But what about the things you don't expect or even think about? For me, the most surprising changes happened to my senses.
Let's start with my sense of taste. I was a huge foodie prior to baby! There wasn't really any food that I didn't love. Now, I dislike the taste of things that make no sense. For example, tomatoes! I find they only taste like water now. And I've tried tons of varieties...they just don't taste good anymore! Move on to white onions. This isn't about taste but more about my stomach growing an absolute disdain for them. Now when I eat white onions it feels like there is a war going on in my stomach and that I am losing!
Next, let's talk the sense of smell. It is quite common knowledge that one of the signs of pregnancy is your sense of smell is heightened. But did you also know that your sense of smell will most likely never be the same post baby?! Enter evidence #1 - my husband's cologne! This perfume happens to be our signature fragrance created for our wedding. Something I adored pre baby! But now, when he sprays it in our bathroom and I am in the shower, I literally gag. I no longer find the smell to be alluring but actually often times quite repulsive. Don't worry I still find my husband attractive. LOL.
Another sense which has changed for me is my sense of hearing! it is way more sensitive. I find myself wanting to turn down the volume in most places (especially bars) we go to! Funny, I am almost embarrassed to admit this since I used to make fun of my mom and dad for this. But now I can't seem to tolerate loud noises as much as before?! Of course, it kind of makes sense. As a new mom, your ears are on high alert...waiting for baby cries to signal to you that you are needed!
Of course this small list does not complete all the many other amazing surprises about becoming a mom! For example, I never imagined I could love anything so much (totally different from love for your partner, of course). Sometimes my heart feels like it is going to explode. And this is just compounded when Aiden does something for the first time, like giggle, babble or roll over!
How about you? What was surprising becoming a mommy or a parent for the first time!? Please share your comments.
Thanks for being a fan,