I’ve often said that becoming a mother changed me. For the longest time, I thought that it had, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized that wasn’t true. Motherhood didn’t change me, it led me to discover who I really was.
I grew up with a yearning to be a mother. I dreamed about it all the time. When I found out I was pregnant with our first daughter, I was elated. My dream was coming true. But motherhood was not as magical as the fantasy I had built up in my mind.
After my second daughter was born, I sank even deeper into depression and anxiety. I was completely depleted. Not only of energy, but of joy. I felt like I had lost myself, but in reality, I didn’t even know who I was, or what was missing. I didn’t know how to refuel myself, mainly because I didn’t know that I needed refuelling, and secondly, I didn’t know what I needed.
That led me on a journey of ‘self-discovery,' as cheesy as that sounds. I took time to get to know myself, to find out what brought me joy, excitement, anxiety, regret, etc. By the time I was done, I had gained confidence in who I was, and what I needed in order to maintain mental wellness. This knowledge and the practical changes I made in my life, significantly deepened my relationship with my family and friends.
Motherhood transitioned me into womanhood. I always thought it would be the other way around - woman first, then mother. But motherhood didn’t change me, as I originally believed, but rather brought the woman in me to the forefront.