Being a mother is a 24/7 gig. You hear it all the time, but you only realize the truth of the matter once you actually become one. You sign up to a job that lasts a lifetime. There is no annual or sick leave or time off. Even if you manage to leave your children with someone close to you for an evening or a few days, you do not stop worrying and thinking about them. Even your body clock often readjusts to be in synch with your children’s sleep schedule.
Motherhood is overwhelming at the start, but one of the most rewarding life experiences. Becoming a mother opens your eyes to a very different world. You discover that you can survive on eating cold lunch and dinner, if you actually remember to eat at all. You learn to do at least 3-5 things at any given time. Your negotiating skills get a workout and you manage to survive on very little sleep. Further, your creative side, whether you have one or not, develops. You learn how to mask vegetables in food, so that your kids have a healthy diet, and to invent educational games that kids will be interested playing in order to occupy them and also to teach them something valuable at the same time.
You start looking at people in a different way, as your approach is now that of a parent. All of a sudden, you are more distant with some of your closest friends and closer with people you previously hardly spoke to due to the difference in parenting styles. You no longer cringe at a sound of a baby crying or children running a riot in a cafe. Funny enough, you often breathe out with relief when a child calls out for their mum and you realize that it is not one of yours.
Daily dealing with children brings you a completely different perspective on assessing and dealing with people, as children do not care if someone is pretty or smart in order to play together in the playground. If they fall, they cry for a bit and then get up and move on to doing something else. They speak their mind without any filtering and are not afraid to show their emotions to others: to cry, to laugh, to dance and to sing in public. The best quality in all children, as a general rule, is their belief in the bright future and, at the same time, ability to live in the moment.
Juggling kids, work, family and social life is hard work for any mother. That time of peace and quiet in the evenings when the children are asleep is always cherished. However, you would not have it any other way. At least this is true for me. There is an old saying that the older the children, the bigger the problems encountered by their parents. I say – bring it on. Motherhood is the best possible job and I would not trade it for anything else.