Surprise Challenges of Motherhood


Motherhood has been full of surprise challenges.  Three things I was not prepared for….

1. I like to eat crow.

I swore my house would not be taken over by toys (my neighbor told me my house looks like a daycare).   I swore to never let my kids eat on the couch (the munchkins regularly enjoy snack, even goldfish crackers in the comfort of the sectional).  I swore never to bribe or threaten my kids to get them to do things (gummy snacks and marshmallows are AH-mazing).

I watched my mother put herself last so much of my life, and when I was my ignorant “non-mom” self thought, “I won’t ever do that”.  I had seen so many women at the grocery store with no makeup and yoga pants and thought “I will get up 30 minutes before the kids to pretty myself up”.  Then WHAMO, SURPRISE! You are tired as heck and don’t care if people see you in dirty yoga pants, you got 30 MORE GLORIOUS MINUTES OF SLEEP THIS MORNING, and another surprise, you could care less what the other people at the grocery store think of you now.  Instead, you have this little person riding in your cart and you are on cloud 9 because they just pointed at a vegetable and called it by the right name.

And here is the big bite of bird….before I was married I didn’t think I wanted children.

 2. This job is SO much more physically demanding than I ever thought.

I thought the  hard physical part of motherhood was the pregnancy – gaining over a 1/3 of my body weight and giving birth.  WRONG.

Daily I am injured by my children.  Whether during the first 7 months with an infant who will only sleep on you in the glider ALL NIGHT (shout out to Best brand chairs that are AWESOME, but still not a bed–just ask my aching back), a backwards head-butt clocking me in the chin while I read them a story, or stepping on a rogue Lego the same color as the living room rug.  When people ask about how the kids are, I often give the line “They are good and healthy, can’t complain.  They keep me busy.  I definitely don’t have trouble sleeping at night”.  It is SO true.  I am tired.  My kids both sleep through the night but my body is worn out at the end of the day.

3.  As a mom, I am more insecure and harder on myself than ever before.  

I used to dress cute, felt smart every day, and didn’t mind the state of my body.  In general, I had my crud together (or felt like I did).

Three words – Nike running shorts (and no, I don’t run – except after the children).

After kids, I constantly doubt my decisions especially when it comes to parenting them.  Now that I stay at home full-time with toddlers all day, I find it hard to be comfortable in social situations that I used to love – I don’t know what to talk about besides my toddler not napping and the newest Sophia the First episode.  Chiming in when the topic is about current events? HAHA, yeah right.  I never watch the news anymore.  Can someone please tell Disney Jr to team up with CNN news ticker so we moms can know a little of what is going on?

I have heard a lot of moms talk about how after kids they learned to accept their bodies as vessels of love that carried their precious children {Who are these women?}.  I am going to put it out there, mommy friends – after a year of exclusive breastfeeding, my youngest Abigail literally sucked the little bit of boobs I had right off! My clothes still fit but not in the way they used to.  Things have shifted, and I DO NOT LIKE IT!

So, what shall we do? Solutions to these challenges? Put ketchup on crow and eat it in good company (love you, hubby!), enjoy going to bed feeling like you have put in a full day’s work (and have a glass of wine with a soak in the tub to ease those aches), and keep working on finding time for you and know you are not alone in learning how to be the *new* you – the Mommy You.

With as many surprise challenges there have been an over abundance of surprise blessings (a future post…but would probably read more like a novel).

What were some of the challenges you were not expecting of motherhood? How have you overcome (or learned to live with) them?


  1. That was cute. Thanks for sharing! I have a 5 month old and the biggest challenge I experience so far is the constant worrying….about everything! “Is he breathing? Am I doing a good job? Have I worked enough on his development? Will that sneeze lead to cancer?” I can’t imagine how much it escalates when they are mobile!

  2. A. I love Sophia the First more than any other person in my house.
    B. I have definitely gotten a busted lip from a toddler more than once.

    My biggest shocker was how sad I was to leave our first to go back to work. I had always planned on being a mom with a career, so it was an idea neither my husband nor I had prepared for!

  3. What a great post! I felt well prepared, let’s face it, for the WORST when I became a mommy. So I was actually surprised that it wasn’t really that bad. Mostly because of the surprise blessings as you mentioned. The biggest adjustments I had to make was making myself nap when the baby did and go to bed earlier at night. No sleep does not make for a good mommy (at least for me). I also don’t do well if I’m hungry or should I call it hangry. So, I had to make sure that I made food ahead of time that was easy to heat up or grab while taking care of the little one.

    What I think we all forget sometimes is how temporary it all is. We shouldn’t be so hard on ourselves right now because it will fly by. Just know you are harvesting these precious humans that will love you for the rest of your life!


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