There was a short video doing its rounds on the internet last week created by Channel 4 sharing two women’s thoughts and stories on the loneliness of Motherhood. Before I became a Mother this is the last thing I thought it would ever be describing it as… but in actual fact, it can be a very lonely experience. I’m not saying that Motherhood is not incredibly exciting or that it doesn’t make me the happiest I’ve ever been – because it is and it does… but this doesn’t mean that it’s not also completely overwhelming and very lonely at times. Watching this video made me realise that I’m not the only one who feels like this – and that it’s okay to talk about it.
I spent the whole first month of Archie’s life trapped in my house – leaving as little as possible. It was all a blur, those few weeks, but I can remember feeling very lost, overwhelmed, confused – and of course – very tired. I thought this was normal for a new Mum and knew that I would soon escape the rut that I had got myself stuck in – and I absolutely did for a short time, when we began formula feeding Archie. It gave me the confidence to leave my house for longer than an hour, I took Archie out for lunch with a friend and felt on top of the world that this was it, my life was getting back to normal, I could carry on as I always had been…
However, it didn’t take long for me to realise that for now, no matter how many people I surround myself with, no matter how much I get out the house, it doesn’t change how I feel on the inside. I can have such a great day and feel happy as ever, but will still – at the end of the day – feel a bit lonely deep down. I think that because my life has changed so quickly in such a short space of time, I’ve sort of lost who I was before. I love nothing more than being Archie’s Mama, but sometimes it feels like everyone – myself included – forgets that I’m still Daisy too.
‘Although it’s not a difficult thing, to love someone else, it’s difficult to love yourself when you’re giving so much to that other person.’
I spend so much of my time fully immersing myself into motherhood that I rarely find time for me – which again, is normal for a while –but I’m finding that if the opportunity does come up for me to be someone other than a Mum, I just CAN’T do it. I can’t remember what I did, what I spoke about, how I acted before who I am now. Most days, for hours on end, I am speaking to someone that only ever replies to me in smiles, screams or shits – so it’s really not a surprise that I feel pretty lost when it comes to normal conversations with people. I also never want to be seen to struggle, never want people to realise that of course, Archie and I have bad days. Motherhood is bloody HARD and there is no such thing as a perfect parent – but sometimes it feels like I am the only Mum in the world that can’t soothe their baby, the only one that is just too shattered from the previous nights sleep to function, the only one who has any issues at all. Because of this, I tend to block myself in and prefer to not see people most days just to save me the embarrassment and them the hassle of coming out to visit their friend who isn’t the same one they had only a few months ago.
I think this makes me a little bitter towards myself – I constantly feel guilty. I feel guilty for not being a good friend or girlfriend, I feel guilty for not being full of laughs and I feel guilty for not being the same person as I always was. In reality I know that it’s perfectly normal and I was always going to be different once Archie was born, but I still cant help feeling bad about it deep down. Loving yourself is hugely important and so not being able to at the moment is really impacting how I act and how I feel around myself AND others.
I know that this will get easier, I will get used to balancing my life out, I will gain more confidence in myself and I will be able to have a life that resembles the one I used to live – but in the meantime, I’m spending my days being a Mama. I’ll chat away to my little buddy, soothe his cries, feed his hunger and make him smile to the best of my ability for as long as it takes – because this is the part of me that I am best at showing, the part I find easiest, the part of me that I can manage to love.
It’s taken me a few days to put all these thoughts into words so I really hope this all makes sense. This isn’t meant to be a sad, moany post because I’m genuinely the happiest I could ever be with my little boy – but it feels good to write down and explain to myself that I’m not alone when it comes to these feelings. And hey, it will pass.