Yesterday, I celebrated my 32nd birthday.
Having experienced childbirth, I have a whole new perspective on birthdays. My thoughts often drifted to my own Mom yesterday. I realize that a birthday of a child is also a special day for a mother. The day Abigail was born, I felt like I had also been re-born in a sense. Reinvented, I guess is a better way to explain it. It's a rite of passage. You are forever changed. The change, for me, was immediate. And I knew I wanted to be a better person. To do better. To refocus. To improve. Not just for myself, but for my daughter and my family.
So, that's what I plan to do.
You know, returning from maternity leave for me has been a bit of a cruel slap in the face. I treasured my time off with Abbey. And it's not that I long to be a stay at home Mom, although, some days I definitely feel that pang. It's more that maternity leave is this lovely time to check out for a while and bond with your child and just live your life without work and other distractions. We were in this safe little bubble together. Now, it's back to reality.
But it's also not.
Because everything has changed. It's strange because it feels like I've crossed over to another side of things. I really don't know how to articulate it. But I've come back into the fold, and it feels like nothing has changed since I left - except me. And I'm frustrated that the world hasn't changed with me. Ants marching.
A year ago today, I learned that I was pregnant with Abbey. The person I was then versus the person I am now feels almost like night and day. I've grown. I have! I have the stretch marks to prove it! And I don't want to stop.
So, in honor of my birthday, new beginnings, and continued growth, I am planning to spend the next year investing in myself. Improving myself in honor of my daughter. Because she has definitely made me a better person. And I believe that in order to be the mother she needs me to be, I need to take care of myself and continue to challenge myself. I will honor my body by trying to eat a bit healthier, and taking better care of it. I will honor my mind by feeding it with the intellectual curiosities that my education left out. I will honor my spirit and energy by trying to take a little time each day to just check in with myself. And I will indulge myself in what really matters and try to let go of all the other shit that just gets in the way.
Or at least I'm gonna try.
Because every birthday is one closer to your last - and I'm done fucking around.