Today marked my first day of maternity leave, the first day that I focused solely on preparation for the baby. Of course, like most pregnant women in their third trimester, I nested and cleaned all day long. It was slow and I only got to the first floor, but I feel like I cleaned 5 houses. I am mentally and physically exhausted and just want to take my Boppy pillow, roll up on the couch and watch re-runs of the Real Housewives of New Jersey, eat ice cream and cry. When I woke up this morning, I had this grand plan to clean the entire house, head to Trader Joe’s, have dinner on the table by the time my Husband came home and look like a cute pregnant wife while doing it. Instead, I dusted the books in my library, cleaned the dishes, fell asleep, cried that things weren’t getting clean and begged my Husband to pick up something to bring home. Now I am here, sprawled out on the couch with my feet up reflecting on my first day of freedom away from work. Many of my close female friends who have already been through this journey, warned me about this; warned me, that I would feel the need to make everything perfect and then told me that I will not, and that is okay. I know they are right. I sit here now on our couch, with my feet perched up on the pillows feeling our future Son kick.
He is my reminder.
He reminds me that I am blessed. I am blessed to be able to do this. Blessed to have a job that supports family time and maternity leave. Blessed to have a roof over my head and support from friends and family. Blessed that God gave me a healthy body and the ability to grow life inside me. Blessed that I have a supportive partner that is there every night to help me get up from the couch, massage my swollen pregnant feet and end up picking up dinner at night after he worked a full day in the office and when I promised him a home cooked meal. As I rushed around all day racing after perfection in my home, it took exhausting myself to remember that perfection doesn’t bring joy; it just brings satisfaction and satisfaction is not what I live for. I live for the moments when my Husband and I laugh at ourselves for some chaotic decision we made together, doctor’s visits when we hear our son’s heartbeat or waiting for each other to get caught up on our favorite Netflix show. We always tell each other at the end of the day, “it is you and me, everything else is background noise.”
So, now I sit here, crying again (man, they warn you about the emotions when you are pregnant, but boy oh boy!). What I learned today is to stop and enjoy the perfect imperfections in my life. To know it is okay to take a day to sleep and be lazy. To remember that there is no handbook when it comes to maternity leave, pregnancy or motherhood and that it is okay to just “wing it!” So, here is my journey at “winging it” and “owning it”! To all the “to-be” and “already” Mothers out there, let’s lift our ginger ale and cheers to “Winging It”!