No one told me motherhood could be so lonely at times.
While I was still pregnant, I had a vision of what motherhood would be and I couldn’t wait until my son was born. It was so easy to be excited about having a baby, especially when my friends and family were too. After my son was born, life wasn’t exactly what I expected it to be. The days were long and the nights were even harder. I had too much time in the wee hours of morning while rocking my baby to sleep to think about things. All the excitement seemed to be sucked out of me and panic set it. Was I actually capable of raising a child, should I give up on breastfeeding, will my baby ever sleep through the night, will I ever stop feeling so tired? I felt like I had no one to turn to for advice or that those around me couldn’t sympathize with what I was going through. Sometimes I didn’t want to talk to family members about certain things and I didn’t want their judgement. At that time, not many of my friends had children and if they did, they weren’t newborn babies. I felt like people that don’t have children simply can’t understand what I was going through so I didn’t see a point of burdening them with what was “wrong with me.”
After a few months of feeling lonely and like I had no one to talk to, I was desperate to bond with other mothers who were going through the same thing. My first thought was, “How in the heck am I supposed to meet new people at this point in my life?” Most of my co-workers are in their late forties and I wasn’t a part of any groups or clubs. On top of that, I am extremely shy in social situations with people I don’t know. I knew that I needed to do something to get out of this funk and feel like a social being again.
Thankfully I grew very close to people I’d met from mutual friends. I utilized social media to connect with other moms, attended play dates, and started going to various events around the city where I could meet new people. I even reconnected with people I went to high school with who now have small children.
It is difficult to put yourself out there and be vulnerable. I’ve discovered that not everyone I meet is going to like me, but I’ve met some incredible people and for that I am SO thankful! I can’t tell you how good it feels when someone says, “Yeah, I’m going through that, too. Keep your head up!” or “This worked for me, why don’t you give it a try?”