This viral facebook post outlined the realities of societal expectations, and I have soooo many thoughts agreeing with this. The images below sum up the post into several, SEVERAL nutshells.
I relate to absolutely everything on this list, plus would like to add – what about dads?? They are generally expected to go back to work after TWO WEEKS. And sure, they are not breastfeeding, but they certainly aren’t getting enough sleep either, not to mention missing out on the sweet moments that happen in those first months AND time to bond as a family. Like, come on America. PAID LEAVE PLEASE.
- I went back to work around 9 weeks post-partum, and I have a blog post worth of thoughts on that. Let me just say I’m taking my whole 16 weeks next time around.
- Stopped breastfeeding after 5 months, and honestly, became a better mom for it.
- Still working on getting back in shape, but honestly try to make it a priority!
- I love being the planner of parties and all that, but MAN does it carry a mental load – always thinking about Easter baskets, gifts for daycare parties, details, where our four favorite pacifiers may or may not be in the house… the mental load is real.
- Appointments + No Time Off… seriously what are you supposed to do??
- Healthy meals… I have always meal planned and feel better when I do. But honestly, I usually do this on my lunch hour now to squeeze it into my time away from home.
- Your marriage… man it’s tough! I’d love to go on more dates – who wouldn’t? But the cost of babysitters and/or the feeling of guilt asking the grandparents, plus the fact that you are just SO DARN TIRED is really hard.
- Having friends who also have babies IS super important, but good luck finding time to hang out that works for both you …
- Self-care…it IS important, and I try to find mine through working out / healthy meals. And while I absolutely think you need to put your own mask on before assisting others, it’s hard to do this consistently in reality.
- ENJOY THE PRESENT. I’ve tried, I really have! But this one gives me so much guilt – like, guilt when I’m looking forward to bedtime, or when I really do just want to scroll through IG for five minutes or watch a movie. All I can say is I try, I try, I try.
Other parents have any views on these? I 100% agree that society makes it tough even though all of these things REALLY ARE IMPORTANT. The truth is that none of us will be able to do all of these at any given time, if ever. So do what you can and TRY to let the rest go…