Written By Karo Omu
I couldn't quite put into words the feelings I felt when I found out I was pregnant. There was new life exploding within me, which was going to be an intimate part of my life. Thoughts ran through my mind daily about the type of mother I would become— was I going to be a strict mom or let her do her own thing? Was she going to keep me up at night for months on end? How was I going to cope with this precious gift? Nonetheless, I decided not to let the unknown deter me from the beautiful life that was waiting for me.
As it turned out, Funmi is such a happy child; she is always smiling and is super playful. She doesn’t take life seriously (well, she is 18 months), and she is ever keeping me on my toes. I see a lot of myself in her. She is my little best friend. Being a mom is such a funny and weird thing. To start, it involves a lot of packing poop. Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, I’ll share what my experience has been. I remember the fear and anxiety I felt when I had two near miscarriages. Typing this brings the feelings back; it was in those moments I realized that the responsibility of this child is mine for the rest of my life. It was scary and great at the same time. Since becoming a mom, I’ve felt happiness from my child that I didn’t know was possible. This one time, my child was constipated and didn’t poop for three days, when she finally did, I was exhilarated. Until then, I didn’t know it was possible to be glad to clean up poop but here we are. I keep going back to the poop because one of the shocking things for me was the diapers—they stink. Movies and people would have you believe every moment is priceless; I don’t think this is true. Being a mother to your child can be likened to a romantic relationship, and sometimes I need my space. I need to catch my breath, and do something on my own or just take time to remember myself as an individual. Those moments have been priceless to me because I’ve been able to come back refreshed and present for our daughter.
I’ve also learned a few lessons along the way, one of them being every child is different, and I understand that. I appreciate little milestones and read as much as I can about the experiences of others. Being a mom also means not sleeping if you have a child, like mine who doesn’t like to sleep. However, this is laced with all the good stuff, the laughter, the jokes, and the life-changing moments. There are so many things I’ll always treasure about this journey— her first smile, her first steps, how she weaned herself off breast milk at 3 months old, her first words she said were— dada, then doggy, then go, and many more, before she started saying mama, which was just a few months ago. I’m not jealous, angry, or sad about this; her father is just as important as I am in her life. Being responsible for anyone’s life is crazy, and you’ll find that kids are always trying to kill themselves, so you have to watch them like a hawk. Never trust a toddler who has been quiet for so long and isn’t sleeping. The funniest thing I’ve struggled with is how much of my identity is now attached to being a mother. Before I became a mom, I didn’t know how much of my life choices would be based on my child. I mean, I get to be so many other things, but right now, everything else pales in comparison. My family has to come first. There is also a fierceness I’ve noticed, I think it comes from wanting to protect my child from the world; from all the evil that exists, but my fierceness and worry have also been checked by my child.
Seeing how bold and daunting she is when she’s faced with toddler obstacles gives me some calm. That childlike curiosity and wonder, makes me realize I might be missing out on life if I keep worrying. I guess I can’t always protect her, although I can try. In all of this, being a parent is a rollercoaster of a journey. Now, I look back on my life and I appreciate my parents for all the sacrifices they made. Some people are great at parenting, but I’ll be honest— I’m just freestyling and taking it a day at a time.
Karo and Funmi
What are some fun parenting memories that you have, if you are a parent, if you aren’t yet, what fun memories do you have about your parents, parenting style? Leave your comments below, also like, share and subscribe, never to miss an update.
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About The Author: Karo Omu is the founder of Sanitary Aid initiative (sanitaryaidng.com) and a lover of life. Connect with her on Instagram with @karoomu and @sanitaryaidng. And if you are a Twitter junkie as she is, check her out with— @duchesskk.