GUEST BLOG POST BY AMY!
For whatever [crazy] reason, I thought being a mom would be really easy. I thought because I WANTED to be a mom so badly that I would just love it so much, which in turn would make it easy! And actually, I might even say it DID come really easily...until our second came! When we had our first, my son Ridge captivated my heart the very instant he was born. I was undone, completely smitten, and overcome by my emotions and how much I loved him. I loved waking up with him in the night, I loved that everyone handed him back to me when he was crying, I loved how much he needed me, I loved figuring out his schedule and his needs and his idiosyncrasies, I loved changing every single one of his diapers. I flat-out LOVED being his mom, and all it entailed. I thought I wanted 6 kids! (My husband wanted 1)!
I talked my husband into another kid and was ecstatic when we got pregnant, until fear started creeping in, around week 4, ha. How would I love two kids? Ridge has had ALL my attention for almost two years -- how will he respond when he has to share me? How will I balance everything? For the majority of my pregnancy I was completely terrified. I felt like I couldn't savor my final days enough with Ridge as my only child. I prayed that baby number two wouldn't come early so I could enjoy every last moment with my best [little] friend.
Navy decided to join our family a month early. She is the sweetest, most smiley addition to our family. I adore her - so much more than I thought I'd ever be able to. But parenting instantly became hard for me when she was born. All the mom things I loved doing with Ridge can now feel annoying with Navy. When she needs me, instead of feeling honored, I feel overwhelmed because there's also a 2-year-old who needs me. When she wakes up in the night, I'm frustrated because I need my sleep to parent the unending ball of energy who wakes up at 6am! When she's crying and people hand her to me, I can easily feel like I just can't do it all. And then the worst part is the mom guilt - the guilt that I'm not loving it the way I did before. The guilt of admitting that it's really hard, that I need help, that I'm not a super-hero mom, that I don't "have it all together".
I quit my job as a Dental Hygienist right before Navy was born, because my DREAM Job was to be a Stay-At-Home-Mom. It was important to both my husband and me that I would get to live out that Dream. But boy is it hard to feel like I'm not contributing financially, I can't seem to get into a good rhythm with the kids, I'm terrible at keeping up with the messes or having dinner made or even getting out of my pajamas. It definitely hasn't been what I expected. But, in truth, I love that - I love that it isn't always easy and that I'm not wired to know their every single need, that it takes time to figure their unique personalities, that each day is a surprise, and that God thought there was NO ONE better on the planet to be their mom than ME! For every hard moment, there are 6,000 beautiful ones. Honestly, when I thought being a mom would be a Dream Job, I didn't realize just how good that dream would be. I didn't realize that very few things in life would bring me as much purpose and joy. I didn't realize how much pride I would feel that they were mine. It's so hard and it's so good! I hope I never wake up from this dream!
Amy Kristen Wilt