I am not the most “kid friendly” type of person; I am an only child who never even had the slightest desire to babysit. Most of my New York City friends are over thirty, but, very few of them have popped out a kid from their loins.
We’re just a different type of girl, I guess.
Weekends in South Beach sounded more enticing than changing diapers, and giving up wine for the better part of a year sounded like a life sentence.
Even with the non-traditional societal norm that comes with city life, I always knew that I wanted one child someday in the future… wayyyy in the future.
But… that day came and I took the plunge into motherhood.
It was obvious from the start that I was going to be a different kind of mommy. Everyone knew that I was not going to be the soccer mom type who scheduled-in the PTA meetings months in advance, or got all excited about birthday parties at Chuck-E-Cheese.
(nope not me… no way, no how)
…My own mom is quite amazing; she should have had six kids. The woman loves to cater to people; make them happy and comfortable. She does artsy crafts and bakes cookies; the woman completely understands children on their level. Like, she actually enjoys the activities necessary in raising children.
That’s not exactly who I am.
I like to be alone and sleep till noon. I don’t deal well with anyone telling me what to do and I can be resentful of people invading my “me time”.
I require a whole LOT of ME time.
I sometimes enjoy watching an all day marathon of “Orange is the New Black” by myself, and dislike my yoga time being interrupted. You know… all of those wonderful things that you must give up when someone calls you mommy.
So when I got knocked up, I became the WORST pregnant lady in history. I complained constantly. There was nothing magical happening in my mind; I did not glow and certainly did not enjoy one single moment of watching my cute sexy figure disappear forever.
I was devastated when my friends were out at a fabulous concert, the MTV Music Awards or jet-setting around the world, when I was stuck at home… sober.
I had read about the rumor where your feet grow at least 1 size; so I wore my size 6 heels into the ground as I got heavier and heavier. It got so bad you could hear “click, clack, click clack” as I walked on the stone floors of my job.
Sadly, I found out the rumor is true!
My son was born. I gathered all my beautiful shoes and reluctantly slid each one slowly down the garbage chute in my building like a Hindu funeral releasing them into the Ganges of 30th street.
Ladies… I’m still out of my element in the size 7 row of DSW’s sale rack. On occasion, I browse the size 6 aisle with envy and a slight feeling of homesickness. What a cruel and evil joke; “I miss you size 6.”
The worst part of being pregnant though? I couldn’t have wine.
I would order one beautiful, rebellious, little glass of red wine at brunch on Sundays; sip it, feel the warmth sliding down into my chest… then instantly feel guilty.
I would hear “Let’s not get the baby drunk, Lisa,” over and over in my head, which made enjoying that sip or two of Sunday-Brunch-Wine completely non-existent.
I would daydream about all those lucky European pregnant women with tipsy fetuses, all happy in their “mum’s” warm belly. I bet the waitress didn’t give them the “look” of disapproval.
Bottom line… Pregnancy was not for me!
My little cherub was born, and I had none of those normal mom reactions. I remember looking down at him thinking…”Who is this complete stranger?”
“He’s cute and all, but, who is this?”
The only way I could explain the feeling of that first glance of my new baby was like this… in a pet store, you get to pick out the puppy that calls to you; the one who pulls at your heartstrings from the window.
“Excuse me, may I see the Chihuahua?” you sit in that little room inside the pet store eagerly waiting for the Chihuahua…and they bring you the most adorable Yorkie puppy.
Equally cute… but not what you expected.
When you have a baby they just plop down this tiny human into your arms and say “here ya go.” A complete stranger is then placed near your extremely full bosom… you are expected to know what to do with that hungry open mouth and all of a sudden your space is invaded completely; the word “privacy” no longer exists.
He takes his first poop and you’re like…”Ummmm is someone going to get that???”
YOU… You are going to get that, from this day forward.
“Oh Holy Crap…. Someone save me.”
About three days into this new mommy gig, I finally had “the moment.” We were sent home; he was laying in his crib next to my bed and I swear to you, he started messing with me!
I would try and softly caress his beautiful face to put him to sleep, but he would POP open his big beautiful eyes and stare at me deeply. There was a magical twinkle in those baby blues… and a very mature smirk on his face.
Maybe that look, the one that changed my life forever was just gas…? But it was intense.
That one moment was so otherworldly and real; I fell madly in love like nothing I have ever felt before.
I honestly kept asking myself if this incredible emotion was really happening or was this because hormones were being ripped from my body in a postpartum fiesta? Could this be the indescribable feeling that parents seem to have about even their most unbearable of children?
“I kinda like the kid; he’s not bad,” I thought.
My life flashed before my eyes; all of a sudden I had to protect him… I had to eat better, exercise more… What if I died and he didn’t know me? How would he be raised if I was not around? I had so much to show him; so many places to go…
My obsession began in that one moment… a love like I have never known.
All of a sudden I did not care about purses or shoes. I did not care about brunch with the girls or making a career for myself, I was a mom… this was my new job.
There are certainly times when I am jealous of my friends who are still living the life I once led. BUT, each and every day when that boy wakes up and says “I love you Mommy,” I know that I wouldn’t go back to my old life for anything.
I used to roll my eyes at those moms who would try to convince me that all the hard work and sacrifice of parenthood was worth the effort it took. They could not convince me; I had to feel it for myself.
Being a mom was not exactly something that ever looked appealing to me before my son, but I know that I made the right choice. I have a reason to fight harder; keep moving forward to show this little kid how amazing the world is. He is my travel buddy, my best friend and my constant entertainment.
While I totally respect the choice of my friends who have chosen to acquire many cats, it was BY FAR the best decision I ever made for myself. They couldn’t possibly understand the depth of this feeling from the outside looking in.
I like to imagine his energy swirling around somewhere in the Universe, thinking to himself “This chick looks fun. She doesn’t know it yet, but I’m going to call her Mommy”, and then MY life began.
I love you kiddo, thank you for choosing me.
Portions of this article were originally posted on BuddhafulBritt.com, by Lisa Brittain