This mom thing is hard. I know it’s hard for everybody – I know because they all tell me just how challenging it is. Most moms I’ve talked to have commented on how the first kid is the hardest. Awesome.
I know it’s common (because all the other moms say so), but I have really been struggling with not being able to do what I used to be able to do. I know it’s normal and I feel glad that I’m falling under the category of ‘normal,’ but I have been wondering lately if the stressors I feel really are the ‘normal’ kind. I mean, I don’t mean to say that my troubles are worse than someone else’s, I never would say that because I know you don’t have to look like me to feel like me. Am I making sense? I just mean that I walked for 22 years before I was paralyzed and I know everyone has challenges no matter what they look like.
But what I am trying to say is that I just haven’t really been feeling connected to other moms when I’m discussing challenges. When I say it’s hard, they all tell me they know. When I say it’s time-consuming, they all tell me they know. Etc. But the way they say ‘I know’ just leaves me feeling like they maybe don’t.
Then I figured out what it is.
Every mom has a pre-baby and post-baby self. She could do this and that before her little bundle of joy was born and now she can’t. I understand. Other moms understand. And once they get used to the post-baby self, they happily carry on with their lives.
But where I have figured out I am different than other moms is that there are three of me instead of just two. I have a pre-baby self (rolling Meg) and a post-baby self (Baby Meg), just like other moms. But I also have a pre-pre-baby self (walking Meg). There was – once upon a time – a fully-able version of me. I mean, I lived into adulthood (22-year olds are adults, right?) in a normal walking, dancing, skipping, jumping, can-get-stuff-from-the-top-of-the-fridge self.
And Baby Meg doesn’t compare herself to Rolling Meg. Nope, I had been feeling so challenged – extra challenged, much more than what other moms were describing – and down on myself because I had kept comparing my new self – Baby Meg – with Walking Meg. I was skipping out on Rolling Meg entirely. “Oh, if only I could walk I could just quickly get in the car and…”
But that totally wasn’t fair. Not at all. And ‘fair’ isn’t a word I use lightly. I needed to cowboy up (ha ha, I love that expression) and at LEAST be like other normal moms and compare my post-baby me, Baby Meg, to my pre-baby me (Rolling meg). And leave pre-pre-baby Meg (Walking Meg) me out of it. She was awesome, I’ll admit 🙂 but so is the post-baby me.
I guess all the versions of me are awesome. And not in a weird, ‘I’m so awesome’ way, but really, there are different things about me I’ve discovered in every version of me. And I’ve learned to love them all. I think there’s things about each one of us that we can only discover through change – be it welcome or not. And I love a good self-discovery 🙂
And I suppose we all need to be careful not to compare different versions of ourselves to each other because whichever one we are at the moment is a good one…even if they don’t score very high on whatever graph we might create…:)