I can’t remember the person I was before I became a mom.
I know she was there – I have pictures and memories to prove it, but I can’t remember her very well.
I don’t remember anymore what it was like during moments of silence or what I considered to be noisy.
I don’t remember what it was like to have my brain switched off because I can’t fathom what possibly kept my mind busy before I had kids to fill every space of thought I have.
I don’t remember what procrastination feels like – even though I was an avid procrastinator before kids. I felt like there was time for everything and I had the luxury of prioritizing the things I wanted to do over the things I didn’t.
I don’t remember what it’s like to lay on the couch and binge watch tv all day long without getting up or what it’s like sleeping in until whenever I woke up.
I don’t remember what it’s like to drive the car and not be constantly aware of the tiny humans in the backseat.
I don’t remember what it’s like to simply leave the house without having to go through a huge checklist of things.
I don’t remember what it’s like to not be constantly worried…about anything and everything.
Sometimes it feels like part of my brain was just constantly on auto-pilot before them because no matter how much other things could fill my thoughts, nothing compares to how absolutely packed full my mind is now.
I liked the person I was before kids. I liked her hobbies and interests and slowly I’m starting to re-introduce those to myself like I’m revisiting an old friend I used to know a long time ago. I’m making room in my life for her because I think it’s important not to lose my entire independent identity to motherhood. I recently had a reminder of why that’s important when we dropped the twins off at our gym’s daycare while I got my first proper workout in since having them. We dropped them off and they confidently walked off to the other kids and started babbling away and didn’t look back once. It was a moment I’ll remember because it was a glimpse into the future. One day they’ll go off to school and make friends and have hobbies of their own and I want to embrace all of those moments of independence not smother them because the only “hobby” I have is them, that’s not fair.
As much as I’ve just started to learn to let the boys go and gain their independence even if it is just simple things like taking their first steps without holding my hands, I’ve also learned to let go of the me before kids. I had to move on from her…maybe not entirely, but I couldn’t spend time trying to figure out how to bring her back and recognize that I’ve grown past her and I’m better for it.
I think if I could give pre-kids Hollie a glimpse into the future she’d be pretty happy with where she ended up.
That is ABSOLUTELY ENOUGH of you talking in the third person, Hollie.