When I wrote this post back in January 2016, I was eight months pregnant and both nervous and excited to become a mom. I knew that God would use the birth of our first child to shape me and draw me to him in so many ways, but that didn’t stop various fears and anxieties from swirling around my head as his due date got closer.
As I look back on these fears I had, it’s so evident that God walked with me and held me every step of the way his first year. He held me through the sleepless nights, the sometimes frustrating and long days, and all the moments where I thought my heart would burst with the joy of being a mama to my sweet little boy.
I think there’s something so powerful in looking back at where we once were and claiming the ways that God showed up in the midst of those places. So today, I want to take a look back at my fears from before I became a mom and see how they panned out.
How My Fears About Motherhood Panned Out
Fear 1: Labor And Delivery
My biggest fear about labor and deliver was the pain. Could I withstand it? This was one area where God totally surpassed my expectations. Like I shared in Caleb’s birth story, labor wasn’t nearly as horrible as I’d expected. Yes, it was uncomfortable, but the pain was purposeful and very manageable. I’m so grateful that our first birth was uncomplicated and peaceful. I know it doesn’t always happen like that but our experience really was so empowering and beautiful.
Fear 2: Sleep Deprivation
Ha well…this one has definitely happened, but one year in we’re still standing! For the most part, Caleb has been a great sleeper. The beginning was tough, but like I shared about in this post, we took intentional steps to protect our hearts and bodies during those first few months and we made it through relatively unscathed. More than I’ve felt physically exhausted from waking up, Caleb’s sleep has been a struggle with control. He’s always been my early riser and poor napper and it has been a constant struggle to control him and change that. I didn’t expect that and am curious how I will approach sleep differently when we eventually have another little one! For now, I think it’s safe to say that losing sleep is hard, but I’ve learned that a new day always comes and a little lost sleep isn’t the end of the world.
Fear 3: A Shift In Identity
This is definitely something I’m wrestling with, especially as I’m back to work for a six week period and our routine feels all sorts of crazy. I love being a mom and I love that my world mostly revolves around loving my family and keeping our home and life running smoothly. It feels simple and freeing in the best of ways and I love that about this season. Being a stay at home mom feels so natural and even though the days are long at times, I really do love this new role. I will have to report back on this one when I’m done with this short stint of being a working mom so I have more to compare it to!
Fear 4: Body Image Post-Partum
I feel super lucky to say that body image has never been one of my biggest struggles. My insecurities have always been more social and emotional, but I was curious how having a baby would change this. For the most part, I haven’t seen much a difference! I’ve yet to rock a bikini since having Caleb, but it’s mostly because none of my pre-baby ones fit over certain parts of me that have grown a bit (let’s just say bikini tops and breastfeeding do NOT mix) and I’ve yet to find a new one that significantly covers me and is still cute. I am so in awe of what my body did in growing and birthing Caleb and what it continues to do in breastfeeding him, and even though things look and feel a little different, I’m not all that worried about it.
Fear 5: A New Season Of Marriage
Marriage definitely looks different these days but most of it is joyful and sweet. As we learn to take care of Caleb, it feels like we are becoming partners and teammates. Sometimes I look at Caleb and watch Jordan playing with him and my heart feels so full at this life we’ve created together. We had our first weekend without Caleb this past week, and it was so sweet to share some time together and remember how much I love this man of mine. Yes, surviving this first year has had its share of challenges, but overall I feel like I’ve fallen more in love with this man and the life that we share. I am excited to figure out what it looks like for us to be more intentional with date nights and such now that Caleb is a bit older and easier to leave with a sitter!
I’d say the overarching theme as I look back on this year is that while it’s been challenging at times, the sweetness and joy of being a mama has far outweighed the struggles. God was so faithful to grow our hearts for our little one, our marriage, and so many other things and I am so grateful for that.
I can’t say that we’re ready to jump on the baby train again any time soon, but boy do we love this sweet kiddo of ours and we are so glad that we get to share our life and our home with him.