Years ago, I used to imagine what it would be like to have children. I dreamed about their sweet little faces and having family time, but I never expected it to be like this. Before I had kids, my life was pretty good. I wasn’t a size 6 (heck, I wasn’t even a size 8), but I was in really good shape, had a fun job, did whatever I wanted, and it was awesome. I remember some nights, I would be up until 2am in a Netflix marathon, or writing papers for school, then waking up at 11am the next morning and being lazy just because. I remember hitting the beach every weekend with my girlfriends and family, and soaking up the sun at the local pool. I have pictures of my babe and I at Schlitterbahn before we got married, and man, have times changed. Life before kids? Yeah, I’m not gonna lie, I’d like one of those days back every once in a while. To look “hot” (somewhat) in a two piece, to sleep in…. Life before kids…. But, then I had Chloe.
Little did I know, when I would imagine having my own little darlings, that it would be OH so different. Little did I know that my kids would ruin me for the rest of my life. I am emotionally, physically, and mentally ruined. I cry every time my sweet Chloe wakes up from a nap and smiles at me with her puffy little sleep-filled eyes. My heart melts anytime my little chunk Kimberly sticks out that bottom lip when something scares her. Yes, I’m ruined emotionally. I will never EVER be able to read an article about a missing child without having to close it halfway through because I can’t even imagine if that were my babies. I can’t listen to “twinkle twinkle little star” without hearing it being sung in the back of my mind by a tired little 2 year old. I can’t go out for more than an hour without knowing that my babies are missing me, and hurting because I feel like I’ve abandoned them. My children have ruined me, physically. My “hot” bikini pre-mama body will never ever be back the way it was. I will forever have tiny marks on random places of my body proving that I once grew a tiny (or not so tiny) human inside of me. I won’t get to relive the day that I didn’t have stitches in unmentionable places. Oh my how my children ruined me, mentally. It will be many years before I am reminded how it feels to get a full nights sleep, because right now, I consider it a “full” nights sleep if the baby only woke up once and I’m up anytime after 7am. I won’t ever be back to the day where I didn’t worry about whether or not my kids were being brought up right. I don’t think I’ll ever mentally go back to before I couldn’t remember what I had to do for the day… 5 minutes after I wrote my list of to-do’s… that I can’t remember where I set down. Yes, indeed, my kids ruined me emotionally, physically, and mentally. But, I am happier now than I have ever been in my life.
A friend of mine asked me today, “what is one thing you didn’t expect to happen once you had kids?”, and I said that I didn’t expect to be able to be so frustrated with someone, yet love them so much at the same time. Kids absolutely ruin you, but it’s in the best way possible. My heart is so full, more than I could ever have imagined, and I am surprised everyday at how much more love and emotions can continue to saturate me.
Children have a funny way of coming into your life and completely rearranging your plans, but because you are emotionally wrecked, you don’t even (can’t even) care. You will become a whole new you after having kids. Embrace it, every moment, because time flies so fast, and before you know it, your sweet little 8lb 5oz, 21in baby girl will be running around telling you no and getting in trouble. Before you know it, that little bundle of joy will be turning 2 and lighting fires inside of you that you didn’t even know could exist. Anger, joy, love, frustration… Just take it all in. Take a picture and hold onto those horrible moments, because one day, you will turn around and your sweet baby girl will be walking out the door to a new life’s chapter, and you will miss the talking back, naked toddler bath kisses, and sleepy eyed smiles of that little baby.
Don’t be afraid to let your children ruin you.