Recently the Yummy Mummy Club held a contest about motherhood. Entrants were asked to write about 1 of 2 topics: How motherhood has changed you or How you have changed motherhood. I really wanted to enter this contest, but then I had a chance to read an entry that was submitted by a friend of mine. It was so perfectly written and literally brought me to tears. I knew I had no chance of winning against this entry, so I decided not to submit one of my own! But ever since the deadline passed, I've been feeling the need to write my entry down, just for myself (and whoever else wants to read it!) So here it goes... this is how motherhood has changed me.
In order to tell my story, I have to take you back to who I was before my little treasure arrived! I spent about 12 years living the life of an ad agency chick! For those of you who don't know, this means long, long, very long days. All nighters. 3 meals a day eaten with your work "family". Weekends in the office. Press approvals at 3 a.m. Week long photoshoots away from home. And, on the flip side, lots of fun work parties and "fun days" out of the office. I met almost all of the friends I have in my life right now in those agency years. There's nothing like making a deck of cards out of scrap paper at 4:00 a.m. to create bonds with people!!! You know, back in those days, I worked so much that I honestly don't know how I managed to meet the man of my dreams and actually marry him! I think it may have had something to do with the fact that we met at work!
When I think back, the worst part about it is that at the time, I didn't think there was anything wrong with my life! I absolutely loved my work to the point where I was pretty much obsessed with it. I was the ideal employee... I'd work 20 hr days and was actually happy to do so... all for the good of the company. Of course I felt guilty when I'd call home and tell hubs that I'd be home by 8:00, only to arrive closer to 10 or 11. But not guilty enough to make a change. It got to the point where I started talking to hubs about the fact that I didn't think I wanted kids. This is crazy... I had always wanted kids from the time I was a kid! But for a few years, my love of my work was completely changing my perspective. When I think about it, this is the ultimate in selfishness. I lost sight of who I think I was at the core... a giving, loving gal who had always dreamt of the perfect life... which of course included a perfect hubby, a perfect home and a couple of perfect children!
After some soul searching, I finally made a decision to leave my agency job and save myself! I missed the work for the first few weeks, but gradually I was able to regain perspective. I spent 5 months at home being a stay at home wife and loved every minute of it. Then I went on to spend a year on the client side as a marketing manager. It was a one year mat leave contract and while I was on the contract I got pregnant! It was perfectly timed... I was scheduled to end work 2 weeks before my due date. But, my little man was anxious to meet me and I actually didn't end up finishing my contract!
Let me tell you... when I set eyes on my Evan, it was love at first sight... a kind of love I never knew was possible. The kind of love that made me wonder how the heck I could have ever thought work was more important. And each day since November 20, 2005, I have felt that love grow stronger and stronger. Even on those challenging days, when I tuck him in to bed at night and give him his snuggles and smooches, my heart skips a beat and I can't ever imagine not having him in my life. All I want to do each and every day is make him happy. And at the end of a long day, when hubs and I are talking, not a single day goes by without us saying how happy we are with our amazing little family and how much joy Evan has brought to us both.
So, you ask, how has motherhood changed me? The answer is: in so many ways... It has opened my eyes to the meaning of life. It has made me a less selfish and more giving person. It has taught me patience and taught me humility. And most importantly, it's taught me the importance of having and giving love. It's funny... now I realize that motherhood is the most important job I could ever, ever have.
** None of this happiness would have been possible without having a super-deluxe hubs who stuck by me through all those years of agency life and still loved me at the end of it all. I love him to bits!