Say What? Time to learn how to be a mom again? What are you talking about? I’ve been a mom for 15 years.
Yes, but you are about to start again from scratch as a mom of a new baby, and you don’t remember all the minute details. That’s okay, you are allowed to forget some of the little stuff for the benefit of the bigger picture.
Just because you are the experienced mom doesn’t mean you need to be the guide all the time.
To have a listen, click here for the podcast version of this post.
Why do I need to Learn How to be a Mom Again?
What does “learn how to be a mom again” even mean? I mean isn’t it true, once a mom, always a mom? Yes, absolutely.
But are you telling me you can remember with exact detail what it feels like not to be able to sleep because you are tossing and turning all night trying to find the right position?
Or that you need to wear pantyliners starting around month 5 to collect the drips (or more like streams) of pee that escapes your bladder when you sneeze through the allergy season. Or Laugh??? Nice. Bet you forgot about that detail on purpose.
Or you remember the feeling in exact detail of the exhaustion of the first week that baby is home?
Do you even remember who all came to the door bearing gifts for the baby?
Come on now, we all forget the little stuff. The big things, yes, we remember the story worthy stuff, yes. But the little things. Nah.
We need to learn how to be a mom of a newborn again, and then mom of an infant, and then a toddler, preschooler, kid, tween, teen, adult…. you get it, right?
We are designed to forget
It’s a protective mechanism. We forget the details of how it feels to be 9 months pregnant and to push through contractions.
The excruciating sensation of having muscles you didn’t know you had being torn apart during the delivery of your baby.
The maternal agony of a having your newborn baby sucking desperately for milk to come and having 3 drops form, thinking we must be doing something wrong.
We are designed to forget all that or we would never let our man get close to us again! Let’s just be honest here.
We block it all out.
So many things are different now
We pretty much are forced to learn how to be a mom again because everything is different after a few years between kids.
Not to mention all the new technology that we have at our disposal now.
Internet, apps, smartphones that actually take excellent pictures and play music and connect us to the vast internet, all in our pockets.
12 years ago, we didn’t have all that. We actually had to read books for the information we were seeking.
Plus all the “tools”. Some are so much better, a lot were better back then. But we learn.
Storage space is limited
We only have so much brainpower to spare on retaining the mundane details of how to prevent getting peed on every time we change a diaper or how to potty train a toddler or sleep train a newborn.
Once you accomplish that goal, the finer details go away to make room for new memories. So it’s okay to ask for advice and look it up!
So what do we do then?
Be flexible enough to learn new things
Some things have changed yet a lot remains the same. Be flexible enough to learn new things and do things a different way this time around.
Since we are sometimes separated from our extended families we don’t see the details of baby raising on a daily basis.
For most of us, we don’t have dozens of baby cousins and nephews running around us. It can be easy to forget.
Child rearing is different in many ways now. That’s okay. Be willing to learn and adapt.
The good news is, the tools have made a lot of the mundane tasks a lot simpler.
Make friends with other moms
Even if they are 15-20 years younger than you!
Bring your experience and intuition to the table, but be humble enough to learn new things from new moms too.
You don’t have to be the guide. It’s okay to learn from the youngins. They have a fresh perspective on the situation we often don’t see. Or they know about new hacks that could really help us.
I know this can be the scariest part, especially if you are a bit introverted like I can be at times.
It is important to have friends to talk to when this motherhood thing gets tough.
And it definitely will. No doubt about it.
Seek out Community
Seek to create a community with other mothers in your shoes. Moms who are raising double-digit age gap families. It is so much more common than you think it is.
You may think you are alone in this journey of raising tweens/teens and toddlers. But you aren’t. There are many of us out there.
Time to support each other in a real way.
We have so much to offer our kids. The gift of experience and the wisdom of time in the field will benefit our youngest children.
But its hard, we are tired now. Much more tired than when our first kids were coming up. It’s exhausting. We need to encourage each other.
This is what we are seeking to create at the www.facebook.com/groups/laboyjoycommunity
Join us there to ask your questions, share some laughs, seek out empathy for the difficult times and offer your tips too.
Extend yourself some Grace to Learn How to Be a Mom Again
Give yourself the grace to learn how to be a mom again. To take baby steps yourself until your recall of experience and intuition kick back in. It won’t take long at all.
You got this mama! It will all come back to you.
Until next time! Thank you for joining us at LaboyJoy.com and remember to have a listen for a few laughs at Joy In Chaos Podcast on iTunes or Sticher. If you are having fun, subscribe and new episodes will alert you when they are ready.
We are cheering you on!
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Chandra is the chocolate-chip loving mother of 2 teenage girls who started over again with a baby boy in her 40’s! She is the author of The Mom’s Playbook to Conquering Softball Season. She gives other moms the tools they need to prepare their daughters for real life. Her content is centered on helping girls grow up to be well-rounded, equipped, expressive, confident, intelligent, capable, kind and independent.