8 Things I Will Never Do Again Now That I’m a Mom

6 Things I Miss (1)



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Long gone are the days when I would roll out of bed at noon and spend the rest of the day  on the couch watching reruns of Vanderpump Rules. If I’m lucky, I get to sleep in until 8am. If I’m not, then 6:30 it is. Moms don’t have the luxury of sleeping in, and unfortunately–sorry to break it to you–it gets worse before it gets better. Just wait until your toddler actually wakes you up in person rather than with his shrieks from the room next door.

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If there’s one good habit I dropped since giving birth to Liam, it’s reading. Bummer, because I really love to read. But the bottom line is that a mom really doesn’t have much “me” time and reading seems like a waste of it when your to-do list is as long as mine: groceries, laundry, dishes, house cleaning, grading papers…  If I’m lucky and don’t fall asleep mid sentence, I’ll read a chapter or two before bed, but that’s about as much as I can handle. Maybe I’ll finish the current one by Christmas. Maybe.

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We’ve all seen that Nyquil commercial (“Moms Don’t Take Sick Days”) and unfortunately, it’s all nothing but truth. Feeling under the weather? Suck it up. Period cramps that have you hunched over all day? Gotta ignore them. Being a Mom literally means you have to become a tough cookie. Babies don’t care about your whining and don’t feel bad, either – life keeps going, and you, Mama, you gotta keep up.

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Before Liam (and okay, before our two dogs) were in the picture, our house was spotless. Not a hair on the floor, not a decorative accent out of place, not a crumb on the kitchen counters. Now, however, I’m lucky if I get time to even vacuum the place (we even invested in a robot vacuum, that’s how desperate we are for extra help.) It’s all about priorities at this point, and, obviously, baby wins. If you really start to get anxiety about the mess you’re living in, use your precious 8-11pm “Mama time” window to do some organizing/cleaning. Sucks,  I know, but it’ll be worth it in the morning (I’ve been there.)

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I made the mistake once at a wedding (had one too many glasses of Cabernet and hit the sheets three hours later than usual), and I suffered the consequences for the next atrocious 12 hours. And considering that this was my first night out since giving birth to Liam, just keep in mind that my alcohol tolerance was at an all time low (and FYI, I only had three glasses of wine.) Again, your baby could care less about your pounding headache…but if you decide it’s worth the suffering, then you better just suck it up. In my case, I’m never doing that again. At least not until he’s old enough to spend the night at Grandma’s.

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Even if I make Liam a delicious and varied plate of elbow pasta, zucchini, and roasted chicken, Liam will desperately ask for a bite of my salad the second I sit down to eat. That’s just how it is – being a Mom means you have to share everything. Better get used to it now. If you look at the positive, though, there’s no better portion control than eating lunch next to a starving toddler.

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I took those last minute mall trips and impulse Starbucks runs for granted, I really did. Now, leaving the house is a whole other deal: stroller, toys, nursing cover, diapers, wipes, and of course you always forget something and have to head home early. With a baby, each and every trip you make is calculated, planned, and written down on the calendar a week early. Unfortunately, unless the timing Gods are on your side and your baby is fed and has two hours to go before bedtime, motherhood rarely rhymes with spontaneity.

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My closet is so full I can barely purchase new clothes but somehow I wear the same 5 shirts and 2 pairs of leggings every single day. Heels? Haven’t worn a pair since before my pregnancy (except for that wedding mentioned above, and believe me, I regret that too.)  Moms live for comfort, and heels and short dresses unfortunately do not make the cut. Even a lot of my jewelry had to go – my beloved large hoop earrings are gathering dust because I keep picturing Liam ripping them out of my ears… Just not worth it. So ladies, if babies aren’t on your agenda for a few years, enjoy those cut out dresses and lace up platforms because they will end up in Walmart plastic bins a few years from now… believe me, that’s where mine are.

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Johanna Riehm teaches in the department of Communication and Media at Manhattanville College and in the department of English at Mercy College. She teaches courses in the history of communication, public speaking, and social media, as well as creative and technical writing workshops. Johanna’s work has been featured in Graffiti Literary Magazine, The Write Place at the Write Time, The Bangalore Review, Cactus Heart Press, and the LaMothe Review. She is working on her first longer work, a creative nonfiction novel called We Carved Our Names in Tamarind Trees.

5 thoughts on “8 Things I Will Never Do Again Now That I’m a Mom

  1. Yes I agree with these all too. I did recently get a form of a sick day but it literally took 2 grandparents and the husband to watch the kids for the day. Isn’t it funny how times change when we have families?! Hangovers and late night drinking so aren’t worth it when you have a 7am wake up call from a wide awake toddler!

    Liked by 1 person

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