I’ve Lost Myself in Motherhood

Lauren Eccleston

I promised in my initial post that I would always be raw and honest about my struggles, successes and emotions. So here it is. This post will be nothing but the truth.

I have honestly lost myself in motherhood.

Putting these thoughts out there into the world is absolutely huge for me.  It’s something I didn’t even discuss in depth with Brett until I came home from a night out full of confidence boosting wine (and maybe some Vodka).  Don’t get me wrong, I adore Lola and I love being a Mum but I do feel like the other Non-Mum parts of myself have completely disappeared.  These parts of me have been replaced with strict routine, loneliness and dirty nappies.  Oh, so many dirty nappies.

I noticed when sitting down (child-free) and discussing this with friends and family, that I wasn’t alone in the way that I was feeling.  The adjustment that is motherhood is a beautiful, messy, fun and sometimes just downright tiring experience.  We go from having only ourselves to look after and being somewhat selfish, to having a baby completely dependent on us.

Not too long before falling pregnant with Lola, I lived in a big city, had a great job, earnt my own money, socialised with adults every single day, ate when I wanted to eat and would always finish my coffee before it went cold.   Then, in an instant, my identity as it was before was gone.  Motherhood is consuming, I haven’t yet gone back to work outside of my home, I feel self-indulgent if I go out to do something for myself and even though I have so many other great Mums around me, that loneliness is still there.  Maybe it’s the lack of adult conversation on a daily basis (the kind where kids aren’t the subject), the feeling of being so ingrained into a routine or the fact that I’m not in a career that I love anymore.  I’m not sure, but it’s tough.  Tougher than I thought it would be.

I know this is a double-edged sword, many Mum’s would love to be able to stay at home with their babies so I do feel totally blessed in that way but at the same time, in giving my all to a teeny tiny human, I rarely give to myself.  Which is important, Mum or not.  I’m a huge believer in that taking care of yourself will go a long way in the way you take care of your children and your family.  However, when you lose yourself, you stop making yourself one of your priorities.

There will be people that will tell you to embrace it, “you’re a Mum now, don’t worry about all those other things,” but should we?  Should we just accept that, if we feel like this?  Should we just accept feeling lost and without our identity?  Or do we evolve instead of just embracing that feeling of loss for our former selves?

I’m going to try to evolve.  I will try my hardest and if I fail I will try again.

I don’t have to know who I am to be a good Mum or to love my babe, but I’m sure that it would improve a lot of the relationships in my life.

It’s time to work out who this new Mum-Me is going to be.

3 Comments

  1. […] haha).  He helps me to set goals, to feel good about myself, he’s been a huge contributor in my journey of finding myself again.  All whilst also adjusting to […]

  2. Jess on June 15, 2017 at 3:30 am

    I used to feel this way when I had my first child, and then 17 months later I had my second child… the loneliness escalated. 17 months after that I had my 3rd babe and if I realised that up until now I didn’t even know what loneliness was. Now I couldn’t keep a nanny or au pair for more than a couple of weeks. No longer could I meet up with friends at the park because it was way too much to get everybody fed, dressed, out the door and home again in time for someone’s nap time. I breastfed each of my children for just over a year each and never used bottles so fitting feeds in around social life was virtually impossible.
    My husband worked seven days, he still does although luckily he has his own business so if I desperately need him or just someone he can come and help, or send one of his PAs but none of the staff have kids and are all so blonde and shiny it’s like sending a giant “this is what you used to look like before you became a saggy belly dairy cow with dirty troll feet and a birds nest on your head that matches your unmaintained bikini area kind of subwoman” sign to my door.
    However now that my children are 5, 3.5 and 2 and life has only gotten busier and more isolating since the bugaboo donkey days are behind us. I have realised something. That old life was full of shine and beautiful things and friendly distractions. This loneliness that motherhood brings is really because other than this tiny being who is completely reliant on you there is no one else. For the first time in my life I was with only me. And I had to discover who the hell me was. It had nothing to do with being a mother. It was just the circumstance of motherhood that had brought me to this position. And I was lonely because who I found was not authentic to who I really was. Without all that external crap I didn’t know who I was. The beautiful things were in storage units because my kids are wild messy assassins, the shine had tarnished because I haven’t slept more than 3 hours in a row in 5 years, the friends faded because after 3 kids none of them stayed around, until they started having kids and the loneliness hit them too.
    But I began to realise I needed none of that. I found who I was. The Former tv presenter and interior stylist who loved to party found that she loved gardening. And growing healthy foods to feed her vegan food loving kids. She loved painting pictures with her kids of all the stuff they did that day every afternoon. She loved the slow lifestyle that allowed for yoga with her babies first things in the morning. And making a healthy version of pizza for breakfast because we had no where to be and no one to meet up with. She loved that even though in her previous life most people knew Of her now only her kids and her husband and herself knew who she was inside. It didnt matter that she didn’t have friends to socialise with daily because she could spend her lifetime with herself and still feel content.
    Self discovery is a pretty amazing journey and like me you have a little one to guide you to what you love. Who already knows who you are and absolutely and completely loves you.
    Love who you find and there will be no loneliness in motherhood.
    Sorry for the lengthy reply to this post I just wanted to share how I combatted the loneliness. Because it Is fucking tough.

    • Lauren Smith on June 15, 2017 at 4:53 am

      Oh Jess, this has made me so emotional!

      Thank you for taking the time to post such an amazing response.

      You are totally right, it’s not about completely losing ourselves, just finding who the new us is. That’s exactly why I posted about this and exactly why I made sure to write that I was all about finding out who this new Mum-me is going to be – because it’s important. Not just for me, but for my babe, my husband and everyone else in my life. I posted so this so that I can be held accountable, I can look back and say to myself, no, you said you were going to find yourself, so bloody do it!

      I am so glad to hear that your journey to self-discovery was amazing. It just makes it even easier for me to strive to be this comfortable within myself! Thank you! Thank you so so much for sharing.

      xx L

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