Hello to all the REAL moms out there! I want to introduce myself to you. My name is Andrea and I have been a mom for 13 wonderful years. My first I had when I was only 21. I celebrated my 21st birthday and 3 months later found out I was expecting! What a wonderful way to grow up all at once!
The next pregnancy came almost exactly 2 years later, which I ended up miscarrying. It was so hard on my (then) husband and me. I learned a lesson at that time. The importance we were putting on frivolous things were minuscule compared to what we took advantage of. Family, our little 1 and a half-year-old girl, and good friends. It was one of the most difficult things I have faced in my life for many reasons.
My second child, I got pregnant directly after the miscarriage. He is my joy that came from suffering. My rainbow baby. He was a healthy baby boy and he ate all the time. He didn’t want me either, he wanted a bottle to be able to eat faster and since I was dead-set on breastfeeding as long as possible, I would sit on the couch and pump, then sit on the couch and feed him, try to get a little done around the house and the cycle would continue. God bless my content 2-year-old who was so easy to entertain! That little girl means everything to me.
My (then) husband would come home from work and wonder what I did all day. I was exhausted from feeding, pumping, keeping up with a toddler, attempting to keep the house in order, and getting a hot meal ready at the time he came home (which could have been anywhere from 4:30-9pm without warning). I couldn’t find the balance between housework, kids, and meals; much less myself and my marriage!
My marriage couldn’t make it for more than one reason. We got a divorce when the children were almost 6 and 4. My oldest took it really hard. Honestly, she still has a hard time with it.
The next few years I was trying so desperately to find that balance between myself, my children, my work, and my home. There was a lot to figure out being alone for the first time in 8 years with 2 kids and half the income. I had to discover myself. I figured out a lot about who I was as a person that I never got to know because I became about someone else so young. I am not saying what age it is appropriate to get married, but I am saying when you lose yourself in that other person and stop growing and discovering yourself, one day you will wake up and have not a clue who you are or how you came to be in the position you are in.
Several years after my divorce I met someone. We were good together, we challenged each other and encouraged one another’s priorities. I found myself pregnant again. My little ball of energy is the blessing I never knew I needed. She is a handful more than even professional babysitters, nannies, and teachers have experienced. She forced me to set aside time for myself just to keep my sanity and she is the reason I came up with my 5-minutes at a time rule.
My fourth pregnancy was a different experience from the start. With the others, my best friend was the toilet for the whole nine months. I probably should have been in the hospital but I didn’t know that hyperemesis gravidarum was a thing so I just dealt with it the whole time. This one was easier in the way of not being sick the whole time. I was able to work, I was able to keep going for my energy ball. My fourth started out and is still so easy going and loving.
My ex started abusing alcohol so when I was only a few months pregnant with #4 I decided to leave. I had to allow him to hit rock bottom. He would have never done that if I was there to catch him and forgive him every time he messed up. It wasn’t fair to my babies, my older kids, or myself.
I always wanted to be a mom. Since I was little that was the only constant in my dreams and goals. I knew I would be the mom that would have the house that all the kids would come to hang out. I would be the mom who packed my kid’s lunches. I would be the mom to give my kids experiences. I didn’t know, though, what kind of woman I would be.
How I feel WE can HELP each other
I know that too many of you REAL moms feel the same way. Kids take over your life if you are not careful. It is a good thing, sure, but it really isn’t. You lose yourself when you grow in only one direction. Finding a balance is one of the hardest things you can do for yourself AND your kids. You teach them so much when you do a little something to grow in all directions. It is a lesson I have to learn often. For about a year now my mantra has been “balance” and I have to speak it every day… multiple times a day for that matter.
This is my passion behind my site
My hope is to speak my struggles, lessons learned, questions, hopes, and dreams to you and you can speak the same to me. “It takes a village” is not just an old time-y saying. It has a lot of truth and weight to it. We need each other’s stories, advice, and encouragement. We will be better mothers and better women for it.
Men too. I am very much including men in this.
Taking time for you is important and that is what I hope you will find throughout your search to discover YOU. I will show you how I do it and I hope you will share with me how you do it.
I hope you get as much out of this as I am putting in for you.
Thank you for visiting!