On new motherhood

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Both images by Deun Ivory

 

I had a multitude of emotions when I first found out I was pregnant. I was nervous and excited about being a mum. Although we ‘planned’ to get pregnant and I knew that I definitely wanted children, I was not 100% sure that the timing was right. I had so many goals that I wanted to achieve, and wasn’t sure how I could accomplish them whilst being a mother. I was scared about being responsible for someone else’s life and worried that I would lose my identity.

At the same time, however, I could not wait to meet my baby and dreamed about all the joyous moments we would share. I smiled at the thought of having a mini-me wrap their finger in mine; gurgle, crawl, walk, come for cuddles and talk. I looked forward to being part of the network of mothers who put their heart and soul into loving and raising champions.

When they handed my daughter to me in the hospital, I lay there shocked at the intensity of it all. It felt like the most natural thing in the world but it also felt traumatising. I felt like I was part of a miracle. I was in physical pain, mentally exhausted and didn’t even have the energy to comprehend that they were handing me a baby and how my life was about to change, but I was so grateful to God that she was there, alive and well. I vowed to be the best mum possible to her.

Now that I’m actually living the daily grind of motherhood. I can say that it is 🙂 😦 >:D 😥  😀 :/ ^^’ ❤ 😀 o_O. It is constant prayer and compassion. It is over-worrying that I’m doing everything wrong and amazement at my ability to do things I have never done before. It is playing breastfeeding by the ear and hoping that my child is not starving. It is trusting in my motherly intuition that my child is not sick, whilst googling every symptom just to check. It is feeling guilty when my child is crying and I simply just want a moment to myself in silence – to do nothing but stare at the wall, peruse Pinterest for DIY ideas I don’t have the time to do, or read a book.

Motherhood is believing in yourself. It is being patient as you and your child both learn and grow. It is trusting that you have that mum magic. It is willing your child to sleep so that you can sleep and then staying up all night staring at them to make sure they are still breathing. It is crazy. It is repeat insomnia. It is being tired and overtired. It is being somebody’s safe space and giving all you have. It is learning to love your self correctly. It is being in love and having your heart live its own life outside of you. It is delivering on your goals and dreams. It is people questioning what you do all day. It is you questioning what you do all day and then wondering how you did all you did some days. It is unmet deadlines and messy rooms. Motherhood is spit up on your new outfits and baby smiles. Motherhood is delightful and it is hard. It is continuously connecting and incessantly learning.

Motherhood is truly a gift and whilst it is crazy, I’m evolving and I’m grateful for it.

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10 things I love about you…

They say behind every successful man is a great woman. I don’t know about every woman, but I can definitely say that for me the reverse is also true. Behind a lot of my growth and key achievements has stood my husband. He has prayed for me, encouraged me, pulled me up when I’m not at my best and even when he annoys me he somehow always makes me smile. My husband is my rock. I love that after so many years we are still so close and have developed a rhythm. I love that we are a team. I pray that we forever share a love of God, travel, literature, food, movies and old homes with lots of character and modern comforts.

Thank you for believing in me. Thank you for being my king, my best friend– a true captain of inestimable value. Here is to building a beautiful present and future. Here are the 10 things I love about you (amongst many and in no particular order :-)).

  1. I love the way you laugh. It is infectious.
  2. That I can still talk to you for hours about any and everything.
  3. How you love and respect me and constantly invest in our marriage.
  4. That you always kiss my forehead before you sleep.
  5. That you buy me apple crumble and custard whenever you go near my favourite crumble shop and that if you are home before me you always ask what I would like to eat.
  6. Wake me up super early to pray and encourage me to spend more time in the word.
  7. Set regular family goal review sessions to make sure we are both working towards fulfilling our vision.
  8. Send me random articles that stimulate my thinking.
  9. I love that you give me my space but also your time.
  10. That you are so fun and down to earth yet super disciplined.

#Grateful #thankful #blessed

I am grateful for kind people. Sometimes you meet strangers who challenge you to be better because of the way they live their life. I remember when I first moved to China for my year abroad, I did not have a clue about anything! I met this girl who fully went out of her way to help me feel settled. Her and her boyfriend took me out to dinner (and paid), taught me short cuts for travelling through the city, gave me tips on things I should be aware of and showed me where I could buy products to look after my natural hair :-). She inspired me to be more caring.

I am grateful for good food. For sweet potato salad, well-marinated chicken, efo riro with grilled fish and rice, giz-dodo, warm cake and ice cream, apple crumble and custard, thank you Jesus. Food makes me happy, especially when it is raining outside and my husband delivers it to me with a cuddle, comfy blanket and a movie.

I am grateful for my past challenges, for all that I am now and for all that I can be tomorrow. I will never forget the struggle of looking for jobs after university (more on that testimony later). It is a sheer delight to wake up with purpose and do work that you love. I am thankful that I did not give up. I have learnt that comparing yourself to others is the biggest waste of time. Mastering the art of self-discipline, being a better you and having a Godly attitude when you are going through challenges is priceless. As is being humble and remembering that you are a Queen. I am thankful that I am learning these lessons daily.

I am grateful for my mother. My sense of possibility, willingness to work hard and strength of mind comes from her. I am grateful for my husband; marrying him was the best decision of my life. I am grateful for family, for people I can totally unfold and be myself with. Beautiful.

I am grateful for laughter. I am grateful for peace. I am grateful for familiar sounds, new music and I am grateful for silence. I am grateful for good health. For limbs that move when I want them to. For the ability to imagine, think, create, and (often) re-create. I am grateful for chance the to start again.

I am grateful for provisions to execute my dreams. I am grateful for opportunities to travel. I am grateful for life.

#Grateful #thankful #blessed

#Goal to write about something you are grateful for. 500 word limit