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Truth of the matter

Originally published at breadcrumbss. Please leave any comments there.

Motherhood is hard. Very hard.

Many of us know this but no one really tells you how very hard it is. Barring one or two people, almost everyone told me – when I was preggers – that motherhood would be an amazing journey and that it would be awesome. Of course, they did warn me of the sleepless nights and gave well-meaning advice covering large areas of baby rearing. But by and large, they said, it’s the best job in the world.

Well, the truth is, motherhood kinda sucks – for me, at least. I mean, it has its great moments, but at this point (C is 8.5-months-old), emotionally, it consists of more downs than ups. I love my baby to bits – it really is a different kinda love – but reality bites.

I feel robbed of my time; my body (not that I had a great one to begin with, but hey, I’ll take anything I can get); my sanity; to a certain extent, my relationship with J; and of course, one of the biggest bugbears of all, my career. I am super tired all the time and I am constantly worried – does he have a temperature, is he sick, should we bring him to the doctor, is he too cold/hot, how’s he sleeping, is he breathing (??!!!!), etc. I was in a happy place till maybe three or four days post-birth. Now, I can’t say I’m unhappy, but I’m not entirely happy either.

It didn’t help that some of my friends – natural mothers that they are – talk about how their tiredness disappears with just a smile or a cute coo from baby. Or how they would love nothing but to spend every moment with the little one. Me? I feel guilty because I don’t feel guilty about going to work. I feel bad because I can’t bring myself to erase the wallpaper of Rusty on my phone and replace it with a picture of C – somebody actually chided me for this, WTF! I tried very hard, but I absolutely cannot understand how one smile from C is an antidote to anything at all.

In all fairness to C, he’s a pretty good baby. He is generally happy, laughs easily and learns fast (except when it comes to accepting solids). And for the record, I am very grateful to have him.

So, how am I trying to be happy again?

Well, I am listening to a good friend who advised me to stay far, far away from Nazi mothers and Earth mother types, and to stop reading blogs that are overly “mummy”. I have also stopped reading so many baby books and instead, am relying more on common sense, guidance from experienced friends and Google.

Slowly, I’m beginning to craft different goals and think about how they fit in or not in my new life. I am giving myself time to be angry, to grieve and finally, hopefully, to accept a new kind of happiness.

Recently, I feel like I am getting there. It’s slow-going and the journey is frought with obstacles, like teething. Patience is a hard pill to swallow.

The point is, I think, motherhood is do-able (of course), but if anyone tells you it’s hard, it’s really many more times harder than they say it is.

If your career (I’m not talking about just a job, but a career) is important to you, like it is to me, you need to know that there is no way – no matter what people say – that you can have it all. Not at the same time, anyway. Unless, you have lots of help and don’t mind missing out on large parts of your child’s life/days.


P/s: I’m just being honest. Don’t mean to be a party pooper.