Ever so often I run into people who think that being a mom is the end of life goals and aspirations. I hear things like “oh you’re a mom, you should just focus on your kids”, I was even told once that if me and my partner broke up I should not date or do anything other than work and raise my children. I’ll be honest, that was some of the worst advice I have ever heard and I think it’s complete bullshit. See, the thing for me is, motherhood is NOT enough. If I solely focused on only my children I would loose my damn mind. Staying home with my kids everyday is enough to drive me insane most days. Raising children can be overwhelming a lot of the time. It is ludicrous to expect a mother to subject herself to having absolutely no life goals or desires outside of loving, caring and providing for her children. Now don’t get me wrong, I love being a mom but I need to be a mom AND have a purpose for my life outside of my children. I need to have something that will keep me going after they have left for college or move out.
When I speak of projects I’m working on or collaborations I have been chosen for, I am often met by deaf ears. I’m asked how will I have time for that and it’s been suggested that I don’t worry about any of my personal wants or goals. This is an extremely unhealthy and toxic mindset to have. This idea that mothers have to be martyrs is detrimental to our sanity. Self care takes many shapes and having a life outside of being a mom is crucial self care. Sadly this is preached to many of us by older generations who Sacrificed their personhood while raising children. That was common back then but mothers of 2018 have decided that motherhood is not enough and that is ok. It ok to not just be a mom! It is ok to NOT want to hang out with your kids every single waking moment of every single day. It’s ok to want to pursue higher education, start a business, and work on projects that set your soul on fire all while raising your children. In fact I personally believe that children need to see that mothers are complex humans who are capable of loving and providing for their children while also fulfilling their own desires and needs. Children should not see mom so exhausted and bored with life because she has succumbed to society’s expectation of once a mother your dreams die. So moms if you were looking for permission to live the life you want, you have it! Go live your life as the best mother and woman you can be! Start that business! Start that website! Join the gym! Enroll in a class! Write down all your goals and aspirations and start working on them TODAY. Break the cycle. Reclaim your womanhood and personhood. Woman first, mother second.