By Alissa Alter
As much as I love to hate the cliche, “You cannot pour from an empty cup” holds true.
And when we become mothers it’s like we are supposed to suddenly have these magical cups with endless resources. I don’t know about you, but I didn’t get one of those. If anything, motherhood puts a hole in the bottom of my cup so I find it empty faster and more often.
Which makes me think of Amy Poehler (obviously) “It takes years as a woman to unlearn what we’ve been taught to be sorry for.”
We are so conditioned to equate motherhood with martyrdom. That our needs don’t move to the bottom of the list, they are removed completely. Our babies deserve, demand, and get every last ounce of everything we’ve got. Plus what we don’t have.
And I’d be lying if I said I don’t put my son first, of course I do. It’s impossible not to put your kids first! They demand it. And this is multiplied exponentially when your child has additional medical, emotional, or developmental needs. When you are an extra lucky mom.
But that doesn’t mean you are erased. You can be on the list too. No. This means you NEED to be on the list.
I reject the ideals, expectations, and myths of motherhood. I refuse to accept that my needs, my well being, my whole self are no longer a priority.
In fact, I would argue that I’m more important than ever! YOU are more important than ever! Because your kids and your family are counting on you. You are their home, their haven, their advocate. And they deserve you at their best.
There is nothing in nature that blooms all year long, so don’t expect yourself to do so either. I had to include another cliche because this one is also true! You’re welcome.
When I was pregnant my mom told me to “Enjoy the attention now because once you have the baby no one will care about you.”
Oof. I thought she was being so rude and I realize now she was one of the only people who was honest about what to expect postpartum. Our society doesn’t value mothers the way we deserve. Or support us.