I love being a Mom. I am very fortunate to have a happy and healthy baby who I formed a strong connection with instantly. I have a very strong support system, I receive a lot of help, and am surrounded by love. Yet, I am still finding myself exhausted and overwhelmed at times.
The bottom line is: It's hard being The Mom.
No matter how much The Dad helps, no matter how much The Grandparents help - it always comes back to The Mom.
Mom has the boob (if you're breastfeeding). And Mom has that comforting smell. Mom is just Mom, and sometimes nothing else will do.
Don't get me wrong: I love this. I love that I can comfort my son like no one else. I love that I get to see him do his "dream suckles" and smile in his sleep. I love the way he reaches for my hand, and tries to suck my chin (I tell myself this is a kiss.)
But sometimes, I wish that I could detach myself from my boob for a few hours - or a day (gasp!) and go out with my friends, or go to a yoga class by myself (yes, I can pump, and yes I do this from time to time: but it requires effort and planning.) And more times than not, that effort and planning is more exhausting and counters the fun I would have at the pub or gym - so I just don't go.
I know a time will come (when I stop breastfeeding and my son sleeps through the night) when I can have a bit more freedom and a bit more "me time" but by then, I'll probably be pregnant again and the cycle will start all over again (haha, I'm not trying to be pessimistic - but it's true. I want more babies) And I'm not complaining (really) I'm just exhaling an exhausted sigh, and saying it all out loud because I know that many of you know what I'm talking about.
I wouldn't trade this experience for the world - and the benefits greatly outweigh the challenges, but sometimes you just get worn down. Sometimes you just get exhausted, and sometimes you just need to admit that it's hard being The Mom.
It also feels good to hear your husband say it. And have him rub your back. "You're doing an amazing job. I love you so much. I don't think I could do what you do." And then somehow, you feel re-charged and re-fuelled.
"Thank you. I needed to hear that today."