Constance Hall nails why moms need to put themselves first sometimes
Motherhood and sacrifice go hand-in-hand. The transition into becoming truly selfless is arguably the hardest part of becoming a mother. Australian blogger and mom Constance Hall knows all about it, and she’s here to let us know we’re not alone.
If you’re exhausted, you hook yourself up to an endless caffeine drip. If you need a shower, you eventually find time to take one (typically 1-2 days after feeling the funk). If you don’t fit into your jeans, behold the wonder of yoga pants. No matter the struggle, there is a solution or quick fix for most of our daily strife. Except the sacrifice of complete selflessness, which is wholly consuming and relentless.
“I speak to a lot of women, a lot. And so many stories sound so similar to each other,” she writes.
“You conceive a baby…
“You sacrifice everything to be a mum, sleep, your body, the time you spend on your hair, shitting alone, drinking, socialising.
“While your partner sacrifices….. some of his money…. a bit of his weekend…
“So after sacrificing everything to have the child, you’re scrutinised, your choices judged, despite your 24 hour days being about making decisions for your child.
“While lover boy is questioned on…. not a lot.”
Mmm, yep. Sounds about right. How many of our husbands and partners are questioned on the daily diets of their children? Their nap times? Their clothes? Their play dates? More often than not, these questions and tasks fall on mothers. While we wouldn’t think twice about doing these things or giving ourselves to our children, Hall reminds us that being a good mother is not contingent upon how deeply we’re willing to lose ourselves.
“Your temper is short, your house is a mess and you never went back to fucking work so your inner feminist is constantly whispering what a shitty role model you have become… to yourself,” Hall continues.
We give. And we give. And we give. Society and social media lead us to believe that if we’re not doing it all ourselves, we’re failures. When did asking for help from our spouses, families, and friends become such a crime? When we do reach out for help, we’re practically swallowed whole by the waves of guilt that wash over us. Our children benefit from having other people love them and teach them. So why do we sacrifice so much of ourselves when allowing others to take part in their upbringing helps them as much as it does us?
Hall continues, “What if we shared the sleep deprivation? What if we let our community help us so we could do that fucking art course or save up for that solo holiday that became a distant memory the minute we conceived, or just watch Ellen in goddamn peace, what if from the very beginning we demanded more from our sexuality? Like maybe even an orgasm…”
Oh, she went there.
Bottom line: having a happy mom is the best gift we can give to our children. Whether we need to take an hour to get our nails done, demand more from our partners, or go away for a weekend alone with our girlfriends to recharge, taking care of ourselves allows us to take better care of our kids.
Hall ends her post with a few words all moms need to hear:
“The sacrificial mother is a thing of the past.
You owe it to your kids to put yourself first.
Teach them that being a mother means showing them what it really means to be a woman and not a pissed off old cow.
“And fuck folding the washing.
“Your life is coming back. You are coming back.”