What I’ve Learned in a Year
I’ve been living the mommy life for a year (Greyson turned 13 months on January 8th), which has made this the most important year of my life. I learned a lot about myself the past year and I’m proud of who I am, what I’ve accomplished, and how inspiring my son is. He’s a breath of fresh air in a world filled with negativity and I can’t imagine my life without him.
I couldn’t sleep our first night as a family of three and not because we were in a brightly lit hospital room, but because I couldn’t stop staring at Greyson, our beautiful boy. I remember feeding him around three in the morning after Andrew had fallen asleep on the uncomfortable hospital pull out couch and I felt so confident in my role as a mama. I held my baby boy closely and soaked up every second like a sponge. The first two, sleepless weeks were trying and a little overwhelming, but Andrew and I made an amazing team, and we still do make the best team.
Andrew has always been supportive, sweet, and our protector. He provides for us, works hard, and even if we argue, he takes the time to listen to me. You learn to listen a lot when you become a parent because your child is always trying to tell you something, even before they start talking. Greyson is always talking, knowing only a few, actual words but he never stops communicating. When he’s quiet and sucking his thumb he’s trying to tell me that he’s tired. When he’s dancing and smiling he’s telling me he’s happy and he wants to play. When he hands me a toy and lays his head in my lap he wants my attention. I’m always listening now to others, more than I ever have thanks to Greyson.
I’ve learned not to sweat the small stuff and to let go of what I cannot change. I’ve learned that sometimes I’m difficult to deal with and it isn’t always the other person who’s the problem. We all have our issues and no one is perfect. Sometimes I am over emotional about something and then I have to take a step back and remember that I don’t have a high tolerance for bullshit and mistakes. I also feel things very deeply and as my husband says, I’m dramatic. I am. I’m a writer and I’ve always been expressive. It’s who I am and I have to remember that information when I get offended or upset because something minimal and small to someone else might actually bother me. I don’t apologize for who I am but I do recognize my own issues and I always try to remember that each individual feels differently. I realized my own demons and baggage affects me and my communication with others after battling with postpartum depression. I was happy and completely fine most of the time but my postpartum depression would sneak up on me when I was alone and made me feel secluded, not good enough, and it kidnapped my confidence and self-esteem. It took a few months to feel secure in my body again and I found a new normal.
Becoming a parent has taught me to appreciate my partner in crime and to never take him for granted. I look at Andrew every night and I love him even more than I did when we met, and I thought I loved you then. Andrew is my calm after the storm and he helps me remain levelheaded and relaxed. I’ve learned how important it is to be with someone who isn’t your twin. Opposites honestly do attract. If Andrew and I were exactly the same we would never amaze or surprise one another, we wouldn’t experience anything new, and we’d probably irritate each other. Although, when you’re parenting there are moments when you don’t agree and I’ve learned to listen, but never lose my voice and opinion. We respect each other. He brings out the best in me and vice versa. I’ve learned what true, unconditional love is by marrying my soulmate and becoming a mom to the best boy in the world. I look at them both and I see the rest of my life. I feel certain, happy, and at peace.
Being a mama has taught me immense patience and understanding. No one knows how to test your patience and drive you insane while making you smile all at once like your child. I’ve also learned to have more patience with myself. Often, the person we’re hardest on is ourself. We look in the mirror and we critique and we expect too much from each day, trying to attain every goal. Once I learned to give myself a break I became healthier, happier, and free. I live openly, colorfully, and without bounds. Some women fear that becoming a mom will take away their youth and freedom, but I found my freedom and a youthful adventure when I gave birth to my son. Greyson showed me who I really am and how strong I’ve become. I’ll forever be thankful for his influence on me. He allowed me to meet the best version of myself.
I’ll spend the rest of my life teaching my son lessons and showing him the world, but he’s already shown me an entirely different realm. I love him so much and I don’t think my life had true meaning before I became his mama. Thank you, sweet boy, for teaching me, loving me, and helping me live my best life.