There are a lot of misconceptions of what happens when you become a mother. For starters, no one really clearly describes just how uprooted your life will become. It is joked about, and smiles are passed as though we are pledges about to embark on some lifetime fraternity, where the secrets will only be revealed through ambiguous crisis that guarantee us our letters, earning us eternal membership. We know it’s forever, but we don’t really comprehend what forever means until we are submerged in it. Drowning in diapers, and tears, little ticks of cartoon theme songs running through our mind all day, we shed everything that made us who we were, and assimilate to what this little life needs for us to be.
I’ve always been restless. It’s an aquarian trademark. Yet, I cannot afford to be restless any more. Restless translates as self-centered, which is not the ideal trait that a (perfect) mother should have. The desire to fulfill the restless void leads to guilt, a useless emotion since all it does is throw you into a circle of depression, longing to be free, hating yourself for longing in the first place.
The real question is: How do you raise a child, when you are still growing up? Is it simply trial and error, do we look at each day like a life lesson and make mental notes for the future? And how, how do I stop wanting a life that is all my own? You start rewinding your memories in your head and laughing inwardly at how much freedom you took for granted. A night with the girls, watching a movie that did not have a G rating. A quiet afternoon reading a book. The little details that you took for granted seem like such luxuries now.
And then, the guilt returns. Creeping in like a ghost reprimanding you for your past sins.
So I’m left wondering, how can I be a mother, yet still be me?