Welcome to Mom Motivation Mondays where weekly contributing writers share their motherhood experiences to encourage you to find the joy in being a mom.

{This week: Post by Heather}

As moms, we can often feel that we lose ourselves when we enter the season of motherhood. All that we WERE before children is never known by our children. We become different, we change, because of our children. This is a letter from one mom to her daughters sharing all about the version of her they will never know. Mom Motivation Mondays series at The Stay-at-Home Mom Survival Guide.

To My Beautiful and Amazing Girls,

I realize you’ve only ever known one version of me.  You know me only as mother, mom and mama.  When you look at me you see a woman who disciplines you, who makes sure you have good manners and respects others.  You see a woman who kisses your boo-boos, reads you book after book and gets super frustrated at bedtime.  You see a woman who works side by side with you until you finish your homework and who makes you re-do said homework when you attempt to rush through it.  I know you’re sighing right now just thinking about all the erasing you had to do.

Did you know that before you came around I led a completely different life?

A life that was solely focused on me one hundred percent of the time.  I had limited worries and normal stresses that usually revolved around work or school or something insignificant.  I was a girl who had the rest of my life to travel, see the world and create my life for myself.  I was different then.  I was admittedly more fun, more confident and more stylish.  I was fun to be around and had very few real complaints about the world.  If you had met me before I was a mother, you would barely recognize that woman.

You will look at pictures of me laughing with my head thrown back reveling in the life I had.  You will look at love letters between your father and me and realize how much we went through as a military couple before you were even a thought.  You will hear stories from my best friends telling you how I was always the life of the party and loved to be the center of attention.

I know you are simply reading this shaking your heads because you can’t comprehend that this woman above has any relationship to the mother you now know, the part of me you will never know is gone.  What changed? How did I become the person that stands before you today?  The one who doesn’t seem at all like that strange woman described above.  In a word children, specifically, you two girls changed everything.

My Children Will Never Know

Immediately after finding out I was pregnant my body in addition to my life now took on an entirely different meaning.  It was no longer about me one hundred percent of the time. I made sure to never ingest or drink anything I wasn’t supposed to for fear it would hurt you in some way.  I took care of my body better than ever before.  I held my breath, seriously held my breath while walking by smokers.  That counted for something, right?  All of sudden I found that I was no longer that worry free girl.  In her place was a woman who read baby books and feared things might go wrong.  Google is not the option for a pregnant lady with an overactive imagination.

Once you were born I realized that traveling would have to be put on hold.  And seeing the world?  Why would I need to see the world?  Holding you was my whole world.  Right there looking into your little face while you were pumping your clenched baby fist in the air.  Where could I go?  What could I do that was more important than being with you? Dreams slipped away as new dreams slipped into place.  Dreams of going to enroll you in your first activity.  Dreams of being able to talk to you and have you answer me.  Dreams of visiting Disney World, if only to see your entire face light up when Mickey comes around.

I am not nearly as fun these days.  I take raising you two seriously, some days too seriously.  I know I need to lighten up, but sometimes the pressure to make sure you are equipped to handle this life one day on your own clouds my judgement.  However, when I am feeling super fun it’s always directed at making you two squeal with laughter and giggle until you scream for mercy.  I can’t help myself those giggles are magic and will take a hiatus during the teenager years.

You ask me even now why I don’t wear “those high heels” that are sitting in my closet.  I laugh and crinkle my nose telling you there is no possible way to run around the park in heels.  I’m not stylish anymore because I simply don’t care about it as much.  I care much more about how you look for your school picture and teaching you how to match your outfit for the day.  I know you think wearing all pink is matching, but I am hoping one day you will take my side on that matter.

I laughed at things I can no longer recall.  Someone must have said something funny or clever, but it escapes me.  Now I laugh at all the silly things you two say.  The deductions you make and the reasoning you have based on your six year old and three year old logic.  I can recall all of the instances you have made me laugh with your simple statements.  I love them so much I record them so you can read them later.

I know it made you laugh when your father and I told you we had been “boyfriend and girlfriend” before we were married.  I could see your little brains working so hard to understand there was a time before you that we weren’t permanent.  You’ve only know us together, a unit, a family.  Seeing us through your eyes you only see mom and dad.  We simply couldn’t be normal people in your eyes.

When you look at me one day in the not so far away future I hope you see the woman behind your mom.

I hope you can one day understand that raising you two was simultaneously the most rewarding and most exhausting job I’ve ever had.  I hope you know how fortunate I am to be the woman I am today because you both changed my life.  You forced me to be selfless and focused and dedicated to something other than myself.  You took my best attributes, all the things that made me me and made them even better.

I know you don’t believe that I was ever the life of the party.  I now consider a party getting you two ready for bed and watching an episode of television or reading before quickly turning out the light.  I don’t care if I go out, even to the movies, because home is where I now belong.  It often seems like just too much trouble, too many logistics are involved to get a date night.  I’d rather tuck you in and wait for you to drift off to sleep.

I happily turned over being the center of attention the minute I gave you both life.  First, I know when I’ve been beat, you two are cutest thing ever so I know I can’t win.  Secondly, it’s hard to be the center of attention when you are focused on making sure all the needs of your little girls are met.  You can’t be the center of attention when you’re little girl is wearing her tutu at her first recital or accepting an award at school.  It’s not possible because you two are the center of my attention now, you are now the life of my party.

See how easy it is to change?  To morph into something you never thought you’d become simply because two little girls looked into your eyes and stole your heart.  Easier than even I could have imagined.




How has motherhood changed you?

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The Part of ME My Children Will Never Know: Reflecting on the season of motherhood and all that we leave behind of ourselves as moms when we have children. Mom Motivation Mondays at The Stay-at-Home Mom Survival Guide.

Heather of Just Becoming Me contributor to Mom Motivation Mondays series at The Stay-at-Home Mom Survival GuideHeather lives in Florida with her husband, two girls and two pups. She is a lover of most things in life, too many to name here without scaring you, but a few include working out, learning new recipes, Pinterest, organizing (yes, it’s true!), home decor and learning to lead a more minimal and purposeful life.

At the end of 2014, she was feeling unhappy, burnt out and discouraged but couldn’t pinpoint exactly what was making her feel that way. She started Just Becoming Me as a venture to better understand herself and what will lead her towards a more fulfilling life. Her motto is: “We only have one life, and I want to learn to live mine in a way that gets me excited to jump out of bed.”


Mom Motivation Mondays is a weekly series here at The Stay-at-Home Mom Survival Guide. Catch up on Heather’s previous posts:

I Don’t Enjoy All Moments of Being a Mom

Working Part-Time Made Me a Better Mom

Working Moms Thoughts on being a Stay-at-Home Mom

A weekly series of motivation for moms brought to you by stay at home mom bloggers at The Stay-at-Home Mom Survival Guide.