So motherhood didn’t turn out the way I expected

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So motherhood didn’t turn out exactly the way I expected.

It has all but ruined my career, erased my social standing, shrunk my social life and nearly wiped out my self-confidence and my pelvic floor.

My carefree, wild spirit is hopelessly lost within the discipline and military order needed to make a busy household run smoothly.

Daydreams and ambitions have been replaced by worries about the ever-shrinking pot of money that has to stretch ever further for never ending piano lessons, school trips, dance outfits and party gifts.

Guilt has become my constant companion…   taunting me, paralyzing me every step of my busy, frantic day.  Guilt about working, guilt about not working, guilt about not being involved enough in my children’s lives, guilt about being too involved. Guilt about reading, guilt about not reading enough. Guilt about drinking, guilt about not drinking enough. Guilt about everything I do (or don’t do).

Cooking, once a favourite past time, an opportunity to explore exotic ingredients from around the world while listening to French Café music, has turned into an every day headache of serious hangover proportions.

Come dine with us… Chez Koscielny – Here’s the challenge:

Three children, who between them like only five ingredients, but they don’t all like the same ingredient – so we’re down to about three ingredients.

Throw this in the pot and come up with something that doesn’t look like the dog’s dinner, tastes better than a MacDonalds Happy Meal, and includes your five-a-day.

Oh yes, you have about 10 minutes to produce this before they attack the cereal box or cookie jar like a pack of hungry wolves, completely spoiling their appetite and rotting their milk teeth.

And then produce a scrumptious meal for your husband and yourself, unless you want to eat the cold leftovers of the three-ingredient meal described above. Actually, not bad washed down with a few glasses of Chardonnay.

Sex – the kind that would have turned Mr Grey a few shades redder in the face, has been replaced by very sporadic efforts with about the same level of energy and spontaneity as an afternoon tea dance for geriatrics.

Yet, from the moment I squinted myopically at the first little wrinkly face and held the squirming little body in my arms – nearly 11 years ago, I was completely hooked.

On Facebook childless school friends show off their still shiny hair, line-free skin and pert bodies. They sip cocktails in expensive bars and go on mid-week short trips to exotic destinations, where I’m sure they have show-stopping sex.

But I wouldn’t swop lives with them. Not for anything in the world.

Motherhood didn’t turn out the way I expected, but it has given my world a depth of emotion it didn’t have before. It made me understand love.

18 thoughts on “So motherhood didn’t turn out the way I expected

  1. Great to talk to you earlier (it’s Jean!) You should definitely follow your heart. This is a great blog and as a rather long-in-the-tooth mother of a 6 year old myself, I found myself chortling my way through this post! Good luck!

  2. Hilarious and all the points hit home…. All of what you have written makes me laugh, smile and want to cry!!!!! I’m now hooked and waiting for the next instalment!!!!

  3. LOL @ wat jy dink jou kinderlose skoolvriende doen! Miskien die ander, beslis nie ek nie. In my oneindige wysheid het ek die kind met ‘n papegaai vervang, ‘n bedorwe brok met die vestand van ‘n tweejarige. Hy verniel, hy bollie, hy praat terug, hy byt, eet als wat hy nie moet nie, volg my oral, raak mal as hy my nie kan sien nie en vergeet van op vakansie gaan sonder ta. Ek lyk meesal deur die gat getrek, klere is om gaatjies in te byt, bekke vol lipstiek aan af te vee (nadat hy die hoeveelste een stil-stil oopgemaak het, uitgevreet het en oor die mat gesmeer het) en haarstyle is om in nes te maak. Maar ons ruil hom ook vir niks, hy se als wat ek vir hom so gereeld se “Mommy LOVES you”, “You’re my sunshine” ens ens regdeur tot by “Stout stout stout STOUT, Timmie byt vir mamma SEER!” en wanneer hy met sy sagte lyfie in my nek kom kruip vir ‘n krappie en ‘n slapie is alles vergete en vergewe en die moeite werd.

    • Ek’s bly om te hoor julle het nie heeltemal so ‘n sorgvrye bestaan soos ek my voorstel nie. Jou papegaai klink amper so veel werk soos ‘n kind, maar nie heeltemal nie. Klink wonderlik!

  4. This is great and no idea why it wasn’t on my WordPress Reader list….!😦 By the way, never believe in the perfect Facebook lives – behind the line-free faces and exotic destinations hide Botox-ed face muscles and even more exotic STIs or other diseases … ha ha ha. i’m sure your life seems perfect to a lot of people! Sunny greetings! x

  5. This is so friggin depressing. I have an 11 month old that I love dearly but the work required to keep her happy is 5 times what I expected. I agree with you on that one. But the whole time you make motherhood seem like a total nightmare and then you quickly write 4 short sentences at the end saying you wouldn’t change anything about your life…. NOT convincing. Your reasoning for loving motherhood should take up at least half the page. This makes young mothers like me cringe. Wow!!! How depressing seriously!

    • Thanks for your comment. Sorry to depress you! This was tongue in the cheek of course. Not trying to convince anyone. You’ll find out for yourself. I do ponder whether this blog should carry a health warning for younger mums elsewhere on the blog. Personally I wish someone had told me what to expect when I was younger. Good luck. Let us know how you get on. It’s not all bad honestly.😉

  6. I am right with you on so many points. Mothering is no picnic, and we do need to tell it like it is. There is so much fluff out there about how wonderful it all is, and so little reality. It can make mothers think there is something wrong with them if all they hear is the happy stuff. And if you’re like me, thinking something is wrong with me doesn’t help me. I do better when I hear I’m doing a good, or even good-enough job.

    And your last sentence is the best: ‘It made me understand love.’ I’m finding that each age and stage teaches me something new about love. Especially in the early years, my child’s need created the capacity in me to meet it, capacity that was not there before. And it’s only the bond I have with my child that motivates me to do the tedious and painful work of growing up enough to parent her as healthily as I can.

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