I was talking to Mommy B the other day about how we can’t remember what we used to be like before we became mothers.
A lot of what we mentioned was physical…we know our clothes don’t fit exactly the way they used to but we can’t quite figure out why. Is it the stomach? The boobs? Maybe the hips?
I saw a mother the other day with a ten day old baby girl and no offense to this mother who overall looked amazing but her stomach looked like she had a ten day old infant. And it just made me smile thinking of when my tummy looked like that. Now at five months my stomach is definitely smaller than it was at the ten day mark but is it back to what it was before I was pregnant? I don’t know because I can’t really remember what it was like before I was pregnant.
And boobs. I look at photos of myself from before I was pregnant and I can see that I didn’t have much in the boob department but I can’t remember what my pre-baby boobs felt like. And, speaking about boobs, I am curious about my future boobs. When I stop breastfeeding what will they be like? Will they shink back to small again?
And of course there is the tiredness. You get used to being tired. The physical tiredness wears off but the mental tiredness seems here to stay. And for the most part acting like a zombie is fine…your baby doesn’t mind, your husband doesn’t mind and your mommy friends don’t mind either…it is when you are let loose in public that the problems arise. Never before did I have trouble answering when the grocery check out person asked me how I was doing. Now I stumble through an answer. And recently I went to a friend’s wedding and I found that I just couldn’t keep up with the conversation at our table. I couldn’t concentrate…it took me ages to fully comprehend what someone had said and even then I inevitably responded with something totally dull that didn’t even make sense. And I used to be…in my opinion anyway…fairly quick and witty. Now I just exist in a fog of motherhood.
And this fog of motherhood extends beyond conversation. What is the date? I have no idea. What did I just think of that I need to buy at the grocery store? I can’t remember. I don’t think Mommy B will mind my sharing this story…Mommy B was at the petrol station trying to get gas but she couldn’t find the fuel tank cover release button…she moved the seat, accidentally opened the hood of the car, was about to head home with an empty tank when she called her partner who told her to try moving the floor mat…and voila! The mental tiredness can make everyday tasks very difficult and it can make your method of problem solving completely illogical.
I can’t remember what it felt like to go through a day feeling rested and sure of myself…I wish I could but I can’t.
And there are other things.
I can’t remember what it feels like to be alone…those nights when I used to get a DVD and some Baskin Robbins and just be by myself…I can’t remember that feeling.
And the feeling when you pour yourself that extra glass of wine…you know you shouldn’t but you also have no reason not too…that sort of harmless recklessness…again a lost feeling.
Your relationships with everyone around you shift…this is especially true of the relationship between you and your partner…and you forget how you used to interact before the baby.
It is a strange feeling not to really remember what you were like physically, intellectually and emotionally. But I don’t mind that I can’t remember what I used to be like because it really doesn’t matter…I am a mom now!