I'm told (though I didn't actually see the episode) that Oprah today was all about moms talking about motherhood and the things no one tells you before you have kids. I did some digging on Oprah's website (I really wish there were somewhere you could watch Oprah reruns), and here are a couple of passages that really struck me:
"One major motherhood realization that Melinda says she had with her first child was that she could no longer control everything in her life. 'You can no longer choose your activities, your down time, when you get to sleep...No matter what you do or where you go, you're always tethered to this other human being...'
"Most mothers are prepared for sacrifice when they get pregnant, but...don't always realize how much that sacrifice includes...mothers need to accept that they cannot reclaim the person they were before they had kids..."
These two paragraphs almost perfectly sum up what I find so difficult about motherhood. I'm a bit of a control freak, and I like to have control over my daily life. I enjoy being able to dictate how I spend my own time, and I want nothing more than to be able to clean and organize the pigsty my house has become...which I still haven't figured out how to do one-handed and with a wiggly five-month-old on my arm. It's almost like I want to be a mom when it's convenient for me, and to give him back when I have other things to do. Because if I don't do the other things - whether it's laundry, vacuuming, grocery shopping, or pretty much anything else around the house - they won't get done. I can't tolerate that. Stuff needs to get done, dammit! Now, don't get me wrong, B tries to help, but his timeline and mine don't always mesh when it comes to this kind of stuff, and, quite honestly, most of the time I'd rather do the cleaning than have to entertain the baby.
As far as the second paragraph goes, I can't accept that I will never be the person I was before I had a kid. I want that Emily back so, so badly. Rarely a day goes by when I don't find myself thinking "I wish you knew me before..." The people I'm surrounded by on a daily basis now are not the same people who surrounded me before I was pregnant, and I hate that the only Emily these people know is Mommy Emily. Because she sucks. A lot. She's depressed, flabby(er), perpetually exhausted, and constantly trying to figure out how she can return her child without a receipt. Oh, and remarkably stoopid. Pre-pregnancy Emily wasn't the most awesome person in the world, but I liked her a lot better.
The questions "Is it really that bad?" and "Knowing what you know now, would you do it again?" get thrown around occasionally. My answers to those are a definitive "Yes." and "No fucking way in hell." I know not everyone gets those warm, fuzzy motherly feelings right away, but I'm beginning to wonder if I'll ever get mine. There are moments when I feel overwhelming love and fuzzies for the baby, but those are few and far between. Generally, it's just frustration and disappointment...in myself, in my progeny, and in my life. See what I mean about Mommy Emily sucking?