Think of motherhood. Has it changed you? As a mother, my initial thoughts were about all the giggles, hiccups, and baby kisses. There are countless blessings that come with having a child, whether it be your first or the fourth. Now, that’s great and all, but that’s not what I asked. How has motherhood changed YOU?
You carry so much love in your heart. Give some to yourself.”
My story and journey in motherhood is new; my daughter just celebrated her first birthday. Once upon a time, I was a high school teacher who loved my life, students, and daily exercising. The moment I saw that little pink plus sign, my entire life flipped.
Motherhood changed me. My mother would often describe me as the perfect child growing up; I was never in trouble, I had perfect grades all the way through college; everything I did was “perfect.” So obviously, I could and would be the perfect mom too, right?! I would drop the weight and look exactly like I did pre-pregnancy within three months. Immediately, I would be successful in my new career that allowed me to work from home. My baby would never watch TV. She’ll exclusively breast-feed. I’m going to cook every meal we have…
None of that happened.
It’s taken me up until very recently to see that things not going the way I planned doesn’t make me a bad mom. I’m not perfect. We eat out more than we probably should. The scale shows a higher number than it used to. I have said all the adult words when baby girl runs over my foot with her walker.
I’m no expert in motherhood or loving myself. I’ve often made it hard for others to love me. It’s taken me a long time to realize that I need to accept and love myself, and the person I am becoming, entirely. I need to stop criticizing myself. Criticism doesn’t change anything. I need to accept myself as I am. Everybody changes, and when you criticize yourself, your changes are negative. When you approve of yourself, your changes are positive.
I am always reminding myself that I am not perfect, and that’s totally okay. I’m not a perfect mom. I don’t have the perfect body. However, I am exactly the person that my daughter needs.
Ashlee is a single mama of 1 and realtor for the Phoenix valley. Her one-year-old daughter keeps her on her toes every second of the day. They enjoy playing, reading, working out, eating too much, singing and dancing. Most days she feels like she has no idea what she’s doing, but when her daughter smiles at her, she knows everything is okay.
Ashlee challenges you to love and accept yourself. To accept your flaws, and not to forget to accept your perfections. She encourages you to find a way to practice self-love and self-acceptance daily. Spend a morning/afternoon/evening dedicated entirely to yourself. You deserve it, mama!