Sunday, July 18, 2010

A Most Important Life Lesson

I've been thinking about what I've gained since becoming a mom--thinking about how I've changed. I started thinking about this on Friday as Olivia and I ate lunch together at Mama Penn's. We had just left the Dr.'s office (Olivia has a double ear infection) and we stopped to grab lunch. As Olivia scarfed down her fried chicken, green beans, mac & cheese, broccoli casserole and cornbread I realized that I've gained a "lunch buddy!"

I have also gained:

1. lbs.
2. the inability to sleep past 7:00 am
3. the "mommy tummy" and love handles to match
4. the ability to recite Goodnight Moon
5. a loathing for Dora the Explorer
6. sinus and ear issues
7. bumpy fingernails. Something about being pregnant ruined my nails.
8. larger moles
9. a 3-minute makeup routine on the days I actually wear makeup
10. an addiction to coffee
11. the realization that the house will NEVER BE CLEAN AGAIN. EVER.
12. this little peanut that runs up and hugs my knees and says, "Mommy...awwwww."
13. volatile hormones
14. a short temper (due to #13 above)
15. the inability to leave a store without looking at toys, baby clothes, diapers, etc.
16. the inability to shop for myself because I'm looking at toys, baby clothes, diapers, etc.
17. the instinct to "catch" vomit. It's true. Olivia went through a phase where she would put her fingers in her mouth after she ate and make herself throw up. I instinctively put my had up to her mouth to try and catch it. Why??? What good does that do?? Where does that instinct come from??

Oh...so many, many things. This could go on forever. EVERYTHING changes when you become a parent. No one ever really tells you that. Sure, people say, "Oh, your life will never be the same." And they say it with a smile and a sense that they've "been there, done that," and I now realize those people understood a life truth that I was walking blindly and ignorantly into. I assumed that people had babies, the babies moved in, you make a little room, and life goes on. What I now realize is that being a parent changes you physically, emotionally, mentally. It changes your core. Completely.

This is a life lesson that should be advertised. Taught in school. Plastered on billboards. It's an important message to get out there. It's right up there with "Buckle Up. It's the Law." And "Just Say No." And "No Phone Zone."

But in the end,

she's all worth it!!

Sincerely,

Leigh

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