I Guess I Am That Kind Of Mom



So, I guess I am that kind of mom.

I spent the weekend in Chicago pretending to be awake and fun for dinner reservations at 9pm, dancing at a club at 2am and for a show that started at 11pm. 
Chicago time.
 (that's an hour behind the East Coast in case you're wondering). 

While I was there, I had the pleasure of meeting a friend of the Bride who happens to serve as a private hair stylist to the Manhattan elite. Obviously, I saw my opportunity to sit and sleep with my eyes open while she did my hair for the night, so I pounced on her. I started off by listing my hair woes (a list that hasn't changed much since middle school) and harped on how limp and greasy my hair is....and, of course, blamed it on the post baby hormones. And the water in Maine. And then the transition to different water in South Carolina. And my olive skin tone. 

She (pretend to) listened to my tirade and then looked me dead in the eye and said:

honestly, how often do you even blow dry your hair?

me: well, I have a...

her: and DON'T say "well, I have a baby"

me: uuuuh. I have a baby.
so, never.

It hadn't even dawned on me that I was doing one of those "when I'm a mom, I'll never..." things but, there I was, kicked can of dry shampoo in hand, blaming my oily scalp on my 10 month old. 

And then it happened. 
A single, childless semi-stranger read me the riot act.

My new friend told me that it was time I got my shit together. 

So what if I had a baby - I still had a hair dryer, right? 
I still showered, didn't I? 
(she did not appreciate the expression I gave her in response to that question which was meant to be interpreted as "suuuuuure I do.....sometimes")

Her point: it was time that I quit pulling the Mom Card and start prioritizing at least the basic level of personal maintenance.

So, ok, I don't take care of myself like I used to.
My weight is a bit out of control for my frame and health, my eyebrows have to get really bushy before I get them waxed and my best friend begs me to get a mani on the reg. 

But I'm a Mom so I'm super busy.

If I'm being honest, I don't really feel all that great about myself right now. 
I don't love looking in the mirror, I hate the size of clothing that I'm purchasing to accommodate my size and I often discuss a certain medical procedure that I cannot wait to have on a certain part of my anatomy that is discussed far too often on this blog. 

I didn't realize that I was making excuses until a perfect stranger called me on it.
And I was making excuses. Everything from the move, weather in Maine, weather in South Carolina, the baby, the apartment, the new house, the old house, hormones, being a stay at home mom, being a work from home mom, being a blogger, you name it, I used it to justify letting myself go.
And that shit is rogue.

So enough is enough.

I let the hairstylist therapy session sink in for a day or so and today I made a point of blow drying my hair, curling it, using product and putting on make up. 
I skipped shaving my legs, despite wearing a shorts romper, but I did put on a necklace, so I'm calling it a win. Baby steps, people, baby steps.

Tomorrow, I hope to go to our new neighborhood and check out a gym that has child care. If all else fails, maybe I'll just drive over there to grab a shower and check emails in the locker room without a baby eating the corner of my soggy bath towel while picking at my toe nail polish (it's gel, so it's not going anywhere. I'm no fool).

I don't want to be the kind of mom who let's herself go and is unhappy in her own skin. I was never that way as normal person, why would I settle for that now that I'm a mother (with my child watching and learning from me, no less)? 

What is it about caring for another human that makes us completely ok with no longer caring for ourselves in even the most basic way? 



.......

If you know the answer to that, leave it in the comments below, I'm too tired from all of my hair brushing and outfit wearing today to even attempt to solve that one. 






27 comments

  1. It's that unconditional love. We'd rather go without if it means tending/loving on that little human we created. We all do it, but unfortunately all we do is sink ourselves more into that "I hate my post-baby self" hole every time we "go without." It took me 8 months to make myself get up and actually get dressed for the day. I lived in leggings and tee shirts for the first 8 months. The small glimmer of confidence I got from doing that made a huge impact on my mood. I say the stylist is right ... to a point. There are days where the dry shampoo will be your best friend or a top knot is the only way your hair is getting done because if you're anything like me, those days happened pre-baby too. ;) But I say take some time maybe twice a week to really spend some time on yourself and I think it will do wonders for your momitude. I think all Mommas could benefit from spending a little more time on ourselves. Thanks for sharing. It's comforting knowing other moms feel the same things I do.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thank you so much for that post. It was exactly what I needed to hear! I've been feeling the same way but making the same excuses and not taking action. Your post reminded me that I'm not alone in feeling the way I do and enough already it's time to take action. Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I can totally relate to this post lady! l wear workout clothes on the reg (mainly because nothing else fits right now...), wearing makeup is a rarity it seems, and my split ends are out of control. I am realizing it's such a fine line between completely letting your go and also showing yourself grace about the fact that you created and are caring for another human, which is pretty amazing. I still want to take care of myself and look good even though I'm a mom, but then it's hard because I'm definitely not where I want to be in terms of getting back in shape. I don't want to keep using the baby as an excuse, but then I also don't want to miss out on enjoying these precious baby months with him because I'm stressing myself out trying to fit back into a certain size. But then I also don't want to just stay like this? Gahhhhh the struggle is so real. I wish we lived closer so we could do playdates, over wine of course :)

    ReplyDelete
  4. I went through 37 different emotions while reading this. 'This hairstylist sounds like a childless little a-hole who doesn't get it' to 'ok maybe I can see her point' to 'whatever, this is just a season in our mom-lives' to ok, but let's don't get stuck in a rut'. I agree with Jane, hair lady's got a point - to a certain point. Let's not add another thing to stress over like looking perfectly polished at all times, but heck yes let's have momma spoiling/primping time. Great post, mama!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Aww sweetie, I think you look beautiful. I hate to be mean, but does your hair stylist have a child? I don't see not blow drying your hair or waking make up all of the time as letting go, I see it more as you have different priorities now. I don't do either (but I didn't before either).

    Don't make excuses, you're not that kind of mom, you're a mom. Sometimes some things will be different. We all look different having our children, but it's not that we don't take care our of ourselves, we have the mom badge, meaning maybe we don't look as sexy, hot, and put together as we did before, but rocking that mom look can be nice :) But hey, go ahead and get primped and have that time yourself that you fully deserve, but don't feel bad if you don't look as good as your hair stylist friend because she has all of this time.

    ReplyDelete
  6. You too? It's a major victory in my house when both legs are shaved. The last time my hair dryer was pulled out is when the baby was tiny and we needed white noise. My eye brows need to be done something fierce but when is there time? And I am pretty sure the last time I had my nails done was the day before I was induced... 18 months ago. Something's gotta give. You're inspiring me to do something for me this weekend. Perhaps eyebrows and a haircut are in order :)

    ReplyDelete
  7. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I'm so with you. I don't think I've ever felt like such an unattractive bum until I had a baby but that's because my priorities have changed. I also think the move has a lot to do with it though... its hard to get into a rhythm when everything around you is total chaos. You've been in transition from pretty much the start of sweet G's life. I really do think it will get easier for you once you move into your amazing home and have time for other things besides packing/unpacking/keeping track of the reno/etc. At least that's what I'm telling myself, but maybe I'm just making excuses too. ha!

    ReplyDelete
  9. You could have fooled us! You look fab, imo :)

    ReplyDelete
  10. Before I had kids, I remember everyone telling me "you won't even have time to shower!" and "you will never wear makeup again!" and I was so determined to prove everyone wrong. Sure, there were days on maternity leave where I threw my hair into a topknot and didn't put makeup on, but most days I put the baby in a bouncy chair, took a five minute shower and put a little makeup on and brushed my hair (and, okay, there was excessive dry shampoo useage). Then I went back to work and I was forced to put myself together anyway, but had already gotten into a good routine with it. I will say that taking the extra time in the morning while hubs feeds and changes Harper has been good for me, but I often don't take the time to go beyond my normal routine like getting manis and pedis regularly or even coloring or cutting my hair and need to get better at that. One step at a time mama! You have a lot going on right now!

    ReplyDelete
  11. PS- you look great, for what's it's worth!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Okay, can I just be the person to say that it really ISN'T NECESSARY to consistently dry your hair with a blow dryer?! Like, is that an indication of sufficient personal maintenance? Who the eff cares?! I say BOLLOCKS to that hoity toity hairdresser. Just sayin'. I dry my hair maybe once a week, and I work out of the house and have 30 minutes to myself each morning and evening for personal maintenance. I think that is the weirdest comment!

    But I totally understand where it may make you think about not letting yourself go. But you really should give yourself a break. I agree with the above commenter - you're not "that mom" - you're a mom. You grew a human, and you are totally responsible for his well-being. It's a big deal. He's not even 1 yet. Things get much easier as the babies grow, but that first year is hard, learning how to be a mom, while also keeping a hold of your own identity. It's a learning experience. It's tough. You look great. You are doing amazing. There's no shame in wanting to better yourself, but don't get bent out of shape over it. It took me 18 months to lose all of the baby weight with the first kid. I did EVERYTHING and I was so upset because it just seemed to melt off of everyone else. I did lose it all, though. I'm 9 pounds away 9 months out this time, but I'm staying way more positive. I'm not going to put myself through what I did last time. I'm much happier, even though I'm dying to buy new clothes (and refuse to buy things a size up).

    Geez, that was a novel. Anyway, you are doing amazing. Just keep on keepin' on!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Even that hairdresser will change her tune once she has a little nugget. Priorities change. I'd much rather spend time playing with E than blowdrying my hair. But, I do see her point. I have to say that going back to work really forced me to put in the effort to not look like a hot mess every day, and it makes me feel good to pull myself together. Although the weekends are another story...

    ReplyDelete
  14. Wow!! Did I ever need to read this today. Super glad I am not alone in this. You got be super motivated now! Thanks for sharing Stephanie!

    ReplyDelete
  15. wowzahhhs ok so even tho this chick motivated you to "get your shit together" shes kinda a B for being so judgemental and aggressive. being a mom is HARD work and balancing that and a reno can't be easy. So while i think it's important to take care of yourself, your little man is your first priority and i dont see anything wrong with that. i will say after reading this i finally washed my face and put some moisturizer...it was going on two days of neglect. we wont even address my bushy eyebrows tho ;) hang in there mama and do what you can. xo jillian - cornflake dreams

    ReplyDelete
  16. Hi! Not sure where you bought your house but the gym I go to has Barre classes. The classes are included with your membership. I go on Mondays and Thursdays.

    ReplyDelete
  17. This makes me a little bit sad and very angry! Gorgeous Gray isn't even 1 yet. He always looks immaculately presented and a happy little boy, even with a super cute judgy face. This takes time and effort! That is where you have been spending your time and do you know what? You are a natural beauty and your kindness shines through and you radiate good vibes, to me this is far more important than how many times you dry your hair. You wrote a beautiful post to your friend who was struggling, be that kind to yourself beautiful girl xxxx

    ReplyDelete
  18. First of all never take advice from someone who doesn't have kids- I doubt she'll be looking glam everyday once she's only had 4 hours of sleep and covered in spit up!! On the other hand I can completely relate to how you're feeling especially now that I've had two kids so close. I joined the gym back in February and it's been LIFE CHANGING. I'm not even joking when I say dropping the boys off for an hour to two twice a week (sometimes three) and just focusing on me (and no phone, or computer, or social media) has been so good for me. It's really nice to have me time, and just me time and I know that I'm getting healthy and happy. Oh and for the record now that I work out I'm pretty sure I shower less and only live in yoga pants but I figure at least I'm not just sitting on my couch :)

    ReplyDelete
  19. You have a baby and your hormones are still out of whack. It can take awhile for those to get back to normal.You have good days, bad days, that goes with being a new mom or even an old mom. The old saying, as women, we feel good when we look good. So cut yourself some slack, right now your focus is on your child, as long as you are eating healthy, trying to get some quality sleep and getting some physical movement in, you'll be okay. The rest will fall into place. I promise. Babies grow up and you'll have more time for yourself. Remember, beauty is from the inside out!

    ReplyDelete
  20. Steph I rarely dry my hair, and I don't even have a kid. So I'd say you're doing a fantastic job

    ReplyDelete
  21. Let me prefeace this by saying I'm not a mom, so I have never walked in your shoes. I don't fully understand what it means to keep a human a live [I'll still babysit so I understand kids are work, but know that isn't a % of the same as being a mom], but I think you do need to take time for you to make yourself happy. I have plenty of mommy friends and quite often they have the same ' I don't have time attitude and I feel horrible attitude' and that makes me sad. Whether it's blow drying your hair [i do it once a week maybe and I"m fine], putting on a bit of makeup, wearing something other than yoga pants or doing a self mani at home, make sure you take the time to make yourself feel good and beautiful. You are a gorgeous girl without all the superficial stuff, but I bet you'll feel better when you know you look good. You are a great mom and a beautiful woman, make sure you treat yourself as one :)!

    ReplyDelete
  22. Reading your post and then reading all these comments is awesome! Especially the last one!! (Bless a mother's heart) I was just thinking to myself this morning how my eyebrows are so out of control they look like they could grow legs and walk off my face. My nails (which used to be painted every 2-3 weeks) are neglected and looking awful. A pedicure?! Oh how I wish!
    The simple truth is. Sure I could still make time for all those things if I wanted to. There are just other things I want to do more. Like snuggle my baby for two hours when I get home from work before she goes to bed. All my "maintenance" time used to take place after work when rushing home just wasn't as fun.
    You know what, yesterday I had the day off for my dentist appointment (because teeth are one thing you don't let "go rouge"! Yesterday I wish I was getting a pedicure or a blowout (of the hair variety not the diaper variety) Instead I did five loads of laundry. Went to Costco. Bought, cooked and pureed three different types of organic vegetables. Blogged. Watched a show with my husband. Went to bed.
    Tonight I am going out with my girlfriends and you can bet your bum I'll have my hair done and makeup on. The truth is that some days are just better spent undone. And sure it's not forever so I stand here, dry shampoo in hand saluting you!
    PS: When I buy clothes in a bigger size than I like I simply cut out the size tag. Because it's not about the size you're wearing, it's feeling good in your clothes!

    ReplyDelete
  23. Wow I love this post. Not a mommy yet, but saving this for the [near] future when I hope to have a little babe of my own. You are doing great momma!!

    ReplyDelete
  24. I am a foster mom to a nine year old so my situation is different. I try to take time for myself so I won't go crazy. I can't take care of someone else if I can't take care of myself; it's like when your on a plane and they tell you to put your own oxegen mask on before helping anyone else. I spend a long time in the shower deep conditioning my hair and shaving with a nice smelling candle lit every weekend while Hubs is home and can make sure the kiddo eats and doesn't get into trouble. But I don't have the same priorities as I used to. Arguing with kiddo about how she really needs to brush her teeth before she goes to school takes priority over putting make up on. I have no idea toothbrushing was so hard! Everyday it is a battle! But I have started waking up at 4:45 to get a workout video in before anyone else wakes up since even if I don't need make up I need my body to be healthy and strong and there's no time for that while the kiddo is awake.

    ReplyDelete
  25. GAH! Another HELL YES post! Where have you been all my life?!? DITTO to all...as I sit here with my two-day-dirty hair piled on top of my head in a bun. I go back to work Monday (after 12 weeks of maternity leave), so this should be interesting ... getting myself and my son ready. Wish me luck!

    ReplyDelete
  26. I think what your mom said is right on: do it if it makes you feel energized or more human, but not for anyone else! We as mothers and wives are always doing everything for everyone else, some things can be just for ourselves. Thanks for posting and for graciously taking all opinions on this lol.

    ReplyDelete