I haven’t been pregnant for a long time.
I joined Team Motherhood over 16 years ago and my youngest is 10 years old for crying out loud. In the land of baby making that is ages ago. Long enough to forget that waking up every hour to meet someone’s needs while they scream at you is not fun or cute. Long enough to have lost every pound of your baby weight and gained it all back again. And just long enough that you feel like you need another baby.
Need. Not want. Need.
Dude 1 is in high school and Dude 2 is half way through middle school. And, as much as Dude 3 loves me to pieces, sometimes I feel like I need to be needed in that way a baby needs you. Like, for life.
And then BFF calls me and tells me about how her baby woke up 4 times between the hours of 2 and 6 am and I’m like
But, this is not to discourage those of you just launching your motherhood journey!
You have SO much to look forward to. Motherhood comes with so many challenges, so many precious moments, so many exciting things that can only be experienced by those who choose to mother.
And like everyone else, I am full of unsolicited advice to help guide you.
Just not the kind you’re use to.
I know you know that motherhood means that you’re going to be tired, that you’re going to be stressed, that you might want to throat punch your husband for looking at you. That’s all part of it. Everyone knows that, including your husband.
And I know you’ve got all that covered.
So, here’s the other stuff.
Parenting Truths: 21 Real Things Everyone Should Know About Motherhood
1. You will never sleep alone again.
Okay, maybe never is a strong word. But, like, it could be a minute. A very long minute that is actually several years before you and your partner aren’t co-sleeping against your will.
Everyone knows you have years and years of sleepless nights ahead of you, but part of that is because for many of them some small person will be kicking you in the kidneys because their bed is hot cold lonely scary just not as good as yours. Dude 3 is 8, he sleeps on the floor in our room at least 4 nights a week. We feel like this is progress because at least he’s not in the bed with me anymore.
2. Your boobs will never be the same.
They will turn into these gorgeous creatures while you’re pregnant. Then they will mutate into something else entirely if you nurse. But, even if you choose not to, their lives as perky little happy friends is probably over. You can still love them, and probably other people will too, just don’t get excited that pregnant boobs might stick around forever because they won’t.
3. You may find yourself sniffing another person’s neck and toes and just not want to stop ever.
All up in there between those little neck rolls, and when you unscrunch those teeny toes, there is a smell, equal parts funky and delicious, that is like the best scent ever. While also being the worst. And you will love it.
4. There will be days when cereal for dinner is the answer.
5. You will get really good at hiding.
Hiding chocolate, hiding presents, hiding yourself in the very back of your closet because if you hear the word mom again you will probably run away and join the circus.
6. You may forget to shower.
And also to care.
7. But when you do, it will be the best 94 seconds of your life.
8. It might actually hurt to wear jeans.
There is something about the freedom of yoga pants that your body will just grow to love if left to wallow in them too long. And, when you attempt to break that cycle abruptly, you may experience painful body rebellion.
9. However, when you put on a pair after your 94 second shower and pair them with deodorant, a clean, puke free shirt, a comb through of your hair, and maybe some lip gloss you will hit the grocery store feeling like Heidi Klum.
Or some other person who showers and wears clean grown up clothing around life.
10. Your bladder may be screwed.
Like for life. Jumping jacks, laughing, sneezing, all of that may cause you to inexplicably pee your pants like the baby you are raising. There is a solution, but that doesn’t make this any less of a problem.
11. You may not know the words to Drake’s newest hit, but you will know every single syllable to that freaking Doc McStuffins song.
Because it will be the music of your life.
12. You will buy those dumb character shoes you said you’d never buy.
Those stubby little feet actually look kind of adorable running around in them.
13. And your kid might want to wear a Scooby Doo costume with a cape every day of life.
Probably, you will let him. Because Super Scooby at the grocery store feels better to you than Naked Two Year Old at the grocery store.
14. Although Naked Two Year Old will probably be who you spend most of your time with at home.
Because clothes are dumb. And if you’re not wearing a bra, who are you to argue with the toddler who isn’t wearing anything?
15. You might love your husband even more.
Except for when you want to seriously end him because he slammed the closet door and woke the baby up. AGAIN. At this point you may not be sure that you love him, or your life of freedom at all because jail is looking pretty okay under the circumstances.
16. You will look forward to that mommy and me class WAY more than your toddler.
In fact, he might actually hate it.
17. And while he throws his Goldfish all over the gym floor and refuses to sing, or shake his shaker, or dance under the parachute, you will do it for him.
Because THIS IS FUN! And you paid $65 for 6 sessions of this awesome so someone is about to enjoy it.
18. Things like going to the store alone, going on a walk alone, and going to the bathroom alone, will be the things dreams are made.
19. Although whenever you do any of those things (aside from the bathroom one), there is a good chance you will be thinking constantly about all of those wonderful people you left behind.
20. And, you will soon forget what life before them was even like.
21. Because the hard moments of motherhood will be some of the hardest of your life, but they will also the first ones you forget.
And the ones you will remember will be the wonderful ones that eventually convince you, at almost 40 with all of your children self sufficient and barely even thinking about you, that you really just need another baby.
Need, not want. Need.