You know what they say: a baby changes everything.
Before the birth of my son, I hated that phrase. It sounded ominous. It loomed over me, threatening to take away what I loved about the life I built. “A baby changes everything? But I’ve worked so hard for how my life looks now. What will I do when this stinker arrives and usurps it all?” You’ll notice that no one ever says this popular phrase in a positive way; it is usually implied negatively, as if things will spiral out of your control. At least, that is how I interpreted it.
I’m happy to share that no, a baby did not change everything. Yes, it did change a lot, as it should, but what did change was for the better.
But that’s not the point of this post. Here is what DID NOT change:
My husband: I’m still married to the same hottie. And yes he did change as he took on the new role of “Dad” but frankly, that only makes him hotter. What’s even better than still being married to the best guy ever is that his love for me hasn’t lessened a smidgen. If anything, he’s shown to love me more as I’ve grown into the new role of “Mom,” post-baby body and all. We still make time for each other, we still put each other first, we still serve and honor each other as a couple. We haven’t lost ourselves completely to the role of “parents only.” For us, marriage came before baby, and it still does.
My passions: I still love all the same things I did before baby. I love art, reading, gardening, the outdoors, and I still make sure to take time for those interests. In fact, I’m looking for a new good book to read right now if you have suggestions! I’ve explored art in new ways with beautiful children’s books. I work my gardens almost daily, trying to teach myself how to successfully grow veggies and fruit (its a long process of trial and error error error). I love taking my toddler to parks and natural areas to explore with me. Feeding my passions keeps me healthy and happy, which only benefits the rest of my family.
My pre-baby friends: I knew some cool people before baby came along and I intended to keep them in my life, so I did. Sure, it can be harder synching schedules but it is so worth it to keep that connection with people who knew the pre-Mom me. They are interested in my life beyond conversations about poopy diapers, sesame street, and toddler activities. They keep a certain part of me alive, and I love them for that.
My music: I’m one of those moms who doesn’t listen to kid’s music. Can’t stand it. My baby boy listens to my music. I’m pumping alternative rock, dubstep, and pop in the car. Even my version of the “oldies” like Nirvana and old-school Maroon 5. To make up for it, I sing a lot to my son. We have a song for almost everything, even poopy diapers. He loves it. And I love my music, so there. We both win.
My car. I love my bright red Honda Fit. We found a car seat that fits inside just fine (and it’s red, too!). We have plenty of room for our family of 3, even for our annual trip to Wisconsin. There is plenty of room in the trunk for groceries and my beloved umbrella stroller. Even with baby #2 on the way, I’m loyal to my car. I’ll just get another car seat to pop in the back. I’ll be the last mom on Earth to get a minivan.
Believe it or not, my sleep: I love my sleep. Love. it. I’ve never pulled an all-nighter except for prom night. I planned my studying in college around my sleep and wouldn’t study past a certain time so that I could go to bed. Sleep is the best. And yes, when the baby was born my sleep patterns definitely changed, but that was temporary. Now that my toddler is a good and consistent sleeper, I can count on good sleep for myself, too. It rocks.
So chin up, a baby doesn’t change everything. You still have a say in your life. What didn’t change for you?