All throughout my life I have had trouble articulating how I feel. In conversations I often stutter, unable to make my mouth catch up with my brain. I always knew what I wanted to say but actually getting the words out was a struggle. This frustration has caused me to oftentimes feel very inadequate and insecure. I found my solace in writing, I was able to feel confident portraying how I felt through stories and journals. I tried to not let this one issue define me, I didn’t want to find my identity in this.

This is how I’ve attempted to approach motherhood. Becoming a mom has made me reevaluate and redefine who I am. As a follower of Jesus, I always find my identity in who He says I am, yet there are so many things that make me who I am. I am a wife, a mom, a sister, and friend. Becoming a mom, from that first time you find out you are pregnant it changes who you are. You begin to prioritize your life differently, you may change your eating habits, stop drinking caffeine, or change your workout routine. Your whole perspective changes. You wait a long 9 months to actually meet the life you have been creating, none of it truly feels real until you meet that screaming baby for the first time.

Before Judah was born, I often said “I don’t want motherhood to completely define who I am.” I still hold to that belief. I don’t want to lose who I am, my dreams and aspirations are still very relevant, though they have taken a back seat to Judah for now. I’ve taken time off of school, trying to reevaluate and dig into what I want to do. I know though that the most important thing I can do for my son is continue to do the things I love as I raise him to be his own person. I want him to see me working hard and for him to be inspired to do the same.

As moms we get enough flack for our every day decisions. These so called “mommy wars” wear me down. The natural guilt that comes with having to make such important decisions for another human is heavy. In the short three months I’ve been doing this, I’ve felt guilty many times. I’ve questioned my decisions, I’ve felt selfish if I left Judah at home so I could do something on my own, we already took a vacation and he stayed home, I had to switch him to bottles because this was working better for our family, and so many other things. I want encourage other moms or moms to be that we be unashamed of what we do to keep our babes happy and healthy. We are moms, but we are still individuals, we have to take care of our families, but we also have to take care of ourselves.

Personally, for me to be the best mom, I have to take a few hours away a week, breathe and then come back to my family feeling refreshed and rested. Moms should not feel guilty about that. Infants are especially demanding, the level of exhaustion is incomprehensible until you are in the thick of it. Yet somehow, parents all over the world make it work. That’s what it is all about in the end anyway. I pray continuously that there can be a change and shift of our culture of shaming, especially on the internet. I pray that instead of feeling like we have to do it all ourselves, that we find our ‘tribe’ and let them help us when we need it. There is no shame in doing what keeps your family healthy and happy.

– Amanda

Side note: I have been attempting to write this post for about a week now. We are transitioning Judah into sleeping in his crib full time and it has been exhausting, it seemed like every time I wanted to sit down and write, something else was demanding my attention. At the start of this new month, I hope to bring change and a different feeling into my life. A feeling of restoration and belief that I can reach the goals I’ve set out for myself in regards to blogging, and my career. Anyway, thank you for reading and please share!