Chicago mom: Mommy brain isn’t all funny and forgetful moments

Mommy brain. 

I had heard the funny stories of things you do and say when you are sleep deprived or your brain is busy thinking about the 1,343,567 you are doing or should be doing at that moment. I have my own share of those stories, from leaving without putting shoes on my child to having to look up my child’s birthday. What no one tells you about mommy brain is that it’s not always funny and it never goes away.

My mommy brain is broken.

Motherhood took the sure, confident brain I had and it turned it into scrambled eggs. I went from carefree to filled with anxiety. It took me through the trauma of my first birth and left me a confused stranger in my own skin. For me mommy brain is anxiety, fear, sadness, anger and many other emotions I never, ever expected.

Motherhood changed how I think, act and feel. I have struggled at times with this change. Fighting it, not understanding it, wishing it away, but it’s made me a better mother. My struggles with postpartum depression and grief have made me calmer and more empathetic to a child who is upset and doesn’t know why. When my daughter says she doesn’t know why she’s crying, I can wrap her in the love of understanding that sometimes we don’t know and that’s okay. The anxiety that I have dealt with since losing a baby has given me insight into normal childhood fears and worry. It has given me tools to help them work through their fears and face them head on.

My mommy brain is different.

My mommy brain has made me who I am. It’s made me take stock in the importance of a slower pace, of self care, and of admitting you need help. While motherhood broke me initially, it has put me back together as a new and different person and made me the mother I am. It hasn’t always been funny or pretty, but that’s motherhood for you. Sometimes it’s more sticky than sweet.

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