There’s no end to the cycle of shifting, changing, and mourning as a mother. Mourning the loss of your beautiful belly, mourning the loss of your new squishy baby, mourning the loss of your body, your time.
I didn’t spend my maiden 20’s learning how to cook, clean, or raise a family. In fact, I did the exact opposite. I started eating on the fly and usually scarfed down whatever I had in my pantry. I got used to eating what I call “cheese sandwiches”, not a grilled cheese, oh no, something much simpler than that.
I didn’t value keeping house and home. I valued being with my friends and doing literally anything else.
In the house I lived in before I had my daughter, my roommates actually asked me to leave because they wanted roommates who wanted to live like a family. They wanted a family, not just a roommate and I only wanted a house to keep me warm in between my romping.
When I had my daughter and chose to settle down, being a housewife didn’t come easily. I messed up many a dinner before I learned how to actually cook a good meal.
I got deeply depressed because I wasn’t valuing my role as a mother and a house wife. I wanted more, wasn’t I supposed to want more? Wasn’t I expected to go back to work since we were working on less than $600 a month coming in?
Instead of pouring all of my energy into other people and other businesses outside of my home, I decided to do the exact opposite again. I decided to pour everything I had into my family.
Friends, the best change happened. I learned to value home and family. I learned how to stop longing for more and started valuing the gift of motherhood and being a house wife.
Sure, some days I long for a time when my oldest will be able to wash dishes for me, but for now, it’s my job and I take it seriously and do it happily.
When I first found out I was pregnant, I was actually terrified. I didn't "have it all together" and I certainly didn't live a life that I wanted to bring a child into. I had to do a lot of internal work to get from the place that I was, partying more days than not, staying up until all hours of the night, eating cheese sandwiches every which way. We didn't intend on having a child together, but God is good like that.
It wasn't what we wanted, but it was absolutely what we needed.
Having a little bean depending on us, looking to us for guidance through this crazy world...that has been the sauce that juiced up the wheels. It has broken all of the walls that we were and still are up against, only because we now hold a vision that IS truly more than just the two of us.
It used to scare me, having someone depend on me that much, but then I realized it truly isn't ever about being perfect. It's about actually trying. Having real conversations with your child, not hiding imperfections, showing them what it looks like when you and your spouse don't agree and are still okay.
I guess all of that to say, Motherhood didn't necessarily propel me into my dream life, but it did shift my perspective to see that success is daily and something that is defined in my daughter wanting to paint with me, being able to snuggle my son to sleep for every single nap without a time limit, sneaking in a quick cat nap, having deep learning sessions with my partner. Success to me IS those little moments that we are able to savor, feeling unrushed and completely present.
I called up the woman I met and asked her meekly if I could apprentice with her. I still knew nothing, but I did know I wanted to be a midwife.
I ended up learning from her for just a few short months before I moved to a different city. At the time, the state I was living in didn't have "legal midwives", so it was extremely difficult to find another midwife to take me on as an apprentice. All of the ones I found were either too far or weren't practicing anymore. So, my dreams got put on the back burner, but it never left my heart.
Over the next few years, I apprenticed with another Midwife for a couple of months before deciding it wasn't a great fit for either of us. I found another Midwife who wasn't practicing, but taught me the art of taking herbs and making them into salves, balms, bath soaks, and all sorts of other goodies.
A long and windy road led me right back to the beginning many years later when I got pregnant with my first child. I immediately knew that I would birth her at home with a midwife. It was beautiful, it was raw, and it showed my heart WHY I want to be a midwife. I felt so cared for when I was feeling so vulnerable. I felt loved and listened to and that is the gift I wish to give back to women.