One woman’s story of surrendering in to her new season of life.
By Sian Yewdall, The Woman Rising Network
Confession: My motherhood journey started earlier than anticipated.
It was 2010 and I’d just returned from a long over-due gap year in London and Paris with my partner and we were excited about setting up our life together in Brisbane.
I was working fulltime and getting back in to the swing of life as a professional woman earning a killer wage and being invited to great events and grand openings as the PR Manager for the city.
After 12 months of travelling and wearing the same sneakers most days, I was thrilled to dive in to my city-girl persona both feet first.
Then one night at an event, I realised my glass of Champagne wasn’t going down as well as I’d hoped.
It felt scratchy, metallic and as if the vintage was off.
I handed my glass back to the waiter and tried again. Nope. Same thing.
‘Must be a bad batch,’ I thought, intuitively knowing full well everyone there had paid a motza to attend and a “bad batch” would not fly for this crowd.
So, I put the feeling down to being exhausted from work and didn’t think about it again.
A week or so went by when it dawned on me that my coffee wasn’t providing the same level of satisfaction I’d once enjoyed.
I was exhausted and wanted to sleep ALL. THE. TIME. And the thought of Champagne after work with the girls was like asking me if I thought JT and Britney would ever get back together… WTF?!
Something was up.
That night I did the pee-on-the-stick dance and waited with breath that was baited.
Two pink lines.
Now don’t get me wrong, I was thrilled beyond all my wildest dreams to have a baby. It was being discussed and planned for in the future. We knew it would happen for us eventually, but I thought we’d have another 12 months or so to settle in to the swing of life, but obviously this is what the Universe wanted for us now.
It seemed my time had come. So I pulled up my big girl panties and got to organising and planning everything to within an inch of my new baby’s life.
We were so excited to welcome our gorgeous bundle.
Then one day in February 2011, our son was born. He was EVERYTHING. We were deliriously happy.
But as I lay in bed and breathed in the smell of my new born baby, I thought, ‘He’s mine. I can’t leave him here. I can’t hand him back. I’m responsible.’
That was the moment my life changed. Forever.
You see, no matter how much you plan, design the perfect nursery and stock the cupboard with the cutest outfits, the reality is this new bundle of squishy goodness will change your life beyond recognition, both inside and out.
Suddenly you start seeing things as dangerous that wouldn’t have crossed your radar earlier.
Your city-girl corporate wardrobe seems out of place and a waste of money when all you want to wear is an XXL Moo Moo and the biggest granny undies you can find.
Making a cup of tea becomes one of the most difficult challenges you face all day and making 7 cups of tea before 10am just so you can enjoy one hot sip becomes standard operating procedure.
But the truth is, I was struggling to come to this realisation while I was in the thick of it. I didn’t realise this new normal, would be so drastically different to the old normal.
I would’ve given anything and then some, to have the ability to make a cup of tea – by myself – and drink it (plus a few sneaky Tim Tams) in peace and quiet on the couch, watching an episode of Entourage.
Seriously, was that too much to ask?
Surely this baby could understand Mummy needed 10 minutes! JUST 10 MINUTES!!!
Eventually my baby boy and I got in to the swing of life.
We discovered what worked for each other and how to handle those hair-raising moments with aplomb and grace. We settled into a new way of life and before long I couldn’t imagine any other way.
This was my new normal, and it was divine, but I still craved excitement, nights out and dressing up in clean, ironed clothes and not have to race home home to breast feed by 5pm.
One day when I revealed this dark truth to a Mummy-friend she lovingly revealed to me, that I needed to grieve my old life and open myself fully to welcome the new with both my head and my heart.
She couldn’t have been more on the money.
Despite loving my new role as adoring Mama-Bear, my head kept reminding me of what I had before.
The excitement. The fun. The freedom. The finances.
It seemed serious FOMO had taken hold and I was stuck between my old and new life gasping for air.
Slowly over time as my role changed again to that of Working Mum, the thought of missing out subsided when I realised I had everything I needed.
I had walked over the threshold into Motherhood and no matter what happened, where I lived, where I worked or how many Witchery handbags I bought as I fought to keep hold of my old life; I would be a Mum first and foremost.
Understanding I could never go back, I finally gave thanks for the life I had.
I gave myself permission to be grateful for the experiences and joy I was blessed with for over 30 years, but the time had come to say goodbye and surrender in to this new season of life.
Finally I felt like I was allowed to release all the expectations of the way life ‘should’ be and leaned forward in to the here and now and welcome the joyful rollercoaster of being a new Mum with an endless ticket to ride.
Oh, the joys of Motherhood.
A life consisting of endless worry, anxiety, confusion and fear topped with a healthy serving of passion and purpose.
For professional advice and assistance, please visit Beyond Blue (www.beyondblue.com.au) to help spot the signs of anxiety and depression, common in the first year of having a baby.
Sian is the founder of The Woman Rising Network, which offers online courses, resources and products to help women cultivate their best life possible. To see the resources Sian provides, visit The Woman Rising Network HERE, Instagram HERE, or join the Facebook Community group HERE.