I didn't leave the apartment for almost eight
weeks, aside from my daily trip to the mailbox. I knew no one else
with a baby. No one in the area with kids, really. So I stayed
home, went through the motions and tried to process my not ideal
I finally decided that hiding away in the apartment
would not help me make new friends. I needed to create a new
routine for this new version of me. I gathered up everything one
could possibly need for a five-minute walk around the block (in
other words, everything in the nursery) and set off.
As we were crossing the street to head home, I
started to worry.
What if that car ran right through the red light?
What would I do? If I gave the stroller a quick, hard shove would
it make it across? Would the person turning right see it? Would the
stroller hit the curb and tip over?
The pedestrian-friendly street I had traversed
thousands of times before had suddenly become a death trap. I
crossed as quickly as I could to the safety of home.
In this and so many other ways, motherhood broke
It took all the pieces that were me and shattered
them, leaving me a confused stranger in my own skin. I was
unprepared for the breaking and for how dark it would get as that
little child cried and cried while nothing I could do would make it
Motherhood is sticky. It doesn't take without
giving something back. Just when I was about to absolutely lose it
and thought I couldn't go another day being so broken, it started
to put me back together.
Motherhood builds you up with little hands
clutching you like a life depends on it (because it does). It
builds you up with a toddler wiping those tears and saying "mommy
okay?" With a spouse understanding that sometimes the most romantic
gesture in the world is to say, "Honey go take a shower, I got
this," as he wrangles all the kids to bed. It builds you with the
understanding that, even if your mind has dark and shadowy places,
you are still there, deep inside and while you may feel broken, you
are not beyond repair.
Motherhood broke me into a million pieces, and put
me back together a new and different person. It showed me that
sometimes the hands of God are short, chubby, soft and barely fit
around your neck. I learned that those hands that could barely
grasp an object could hold me up and put me back together, one
messy broken piece at a time.
Melissa is mom to 4 kids and 2 angels. She chronicles the sticky bits of motherhood at Peanut Butter in my Hair.
See more of Melissa's stories here.
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