While walking through the halls of my church last Sunday, I came across a woman nursing her baby. She sat quietly alone, and smiled as I walked past. “I really miss breastfeeding,” I said to her. She replied with surprise, and mentioned that she found it so isolating. I had forgotten that feeling. It’s funny how when you’re in one season of motherhood, the others seem so peaceful.
It was only a few years ago that I was in that baby phase. I remember being awake in the middle of the night with a newborn, changing him, feeding him, rocking him. I lived my life in sweat pants and rarely did my hair or makeup. Oh, those were hard times, but they were also so very special. Life felt simple and uncomplicated. My entire day was consumed with those babies.
I’m in a new phase now; a louder and more complicated phase. My kids problems are bigger than needing a diaper change. There are real emotional struggles and life altering discussions that happen daily. We’re dealing with fears and the constant question of ‘why.’ I’m teaching responsibility and respectfulness and it can be exasperating. I long for five minutes of silence to hear myself think. Parenting has gone from being physically exhausting to mentally exhausting.
And yet, there’s beauty in every season of Motherhood. My boys and I spend hours talking about the places we dream of traveling to. My daughter and I sing our favourite songs together and giggle in her bed. I get to see them develop passions and love. I can talk to them about things, and they actually understand! How cool is that?
Other perks of my children growing older is that I have time for friendships again. My husband and I have the ability to go on dates frequently, and I can cook a proper meal! These are things that had been cast aside during those crazy always-exhausted baby days. I’m really happy with the phase we’re in.
I admit that leaving the baby phase behind felt a bit like a loss of an identity. Being pregnant and nursing consumed the past six years of my life. That’s a long time when you’ve only lived thirty years. It’s like I’m rediscovering who I am and who I want to be.
I’ve been asking myself what I want to achieve in the next ten to twenty years with my kids. What kind of people do I want to teach them to be? What do I want them to remember when they’ve moved out? What is important right now?
This current season of Motherhood is all about growing, both for them and for me. We’re learning more about who we are.
There’s beauty in every season of Motherhood. Which season are you in?