I knew motherhood would come with a whirlwind of sacrifices, and it truly has–some expected but most unexpected.
Recently, I had the task of packing for our first vacation as a family of three. I’m a planner, so a month in advance I sat down and listed every single thing we could possibly need for five days away from home. Three weeks in advance, I ordered anything that wasn’t coming via Amazon or Target pick-up to avoid any shipping delays.
As package after package arrived, I proudly checked off my list and started packing. It was a week before the trip when I realized that the only thing I had checked off of my list for myself was a hair appointment. A hair appointment specifically to have my hair braided so that I could avoid dealing with my mass of curly hair on vacation with a baby. So an appointment pseudo for me and pseudo out of necessity.
It quickly hit me that gone were the days when preparing for a vacation meant perfectly coordinated swimsuits and coverups. I hadn’t adhered my name in vinyl to any new tumblers to hold my cocktails. There were no new outfits or designer shades being delivered in preparation for my endless selfies. There were just 238 practical things on my “for the baby” list.
Other Ways That Life Is Different Now
The other day I saw THE car I wanted so desperately before I had a baby. When my two-door car was totaled during my pregnancy, I knew what car I wanted next. It’s the car I had always wanted next. However, over time, my husband convinced me I needed a more affordable and kid-friendly car. Sigh. I knew he was right, but a small piece of me grieved that I may never drive a non-Mom car again. I probably should have appreciated my rides in my two-door car with minimal trunk space more.
Something else I underappreciated–dresses! I used to enjoy wearing dresses before I was a mom, but I can count on one hand the times I’ve worn a dress since my son was born. I’ve been breastfeeding for 11 months now and I just can’t make it work well in a dress. Also, pumping 3 times a day with a dress lifted above my head isn’t the most comfortable. Sometimes I do wonder anticipate the days I can pick from my rack of dresses collecting dust in the closet.
Speaking of my attire, whew, my looks have taken a hit. I try to keep it “kind of” cute when I’m out and about. But this is a different kind of cute than my pre-kid cute. This is a baby toting, five-minute face, comfy athleisure wear cute. You see, my kid ruins every article of clothing he touches. Nothing is safe from a stain or crust from dried up who knows what. It’s inevitable. Comfort and functionality completely trump style. Sometimes I wonder if I’ll ever trust nice things within his reach again.
Let’s not get started on the house. It makes me chuckle just to think about the gleeful look on his face when he discovers something new to play with (i.e. destroy). My light-colored couch and white rugs were such an unaware new Mom purchase. He has no interest in being restricted behind my baby gates and will scream until he is set free. I’m bound to find an old puff snack in sight at any time and something is always stained or sticky with an unknown substance. I wonder… will I ever get to buy nice home items again?
Amidst all of my wondering, I’m so sure of one thing, that I love my new life. He’s so worth it and this life is so worth it. It’s truly what I dreamed of and prayed for. But it’s new to me and I’m still learning and adjusting.
So if you see me out and about in my mom car, with my 5-minute face and braided messy bun staring off into space, don’t mind me. I may be taking a quick break from reality to wonder when and if I’ll ever have nice things again.