Standing over a sink of bottles soaking in warm, soapy water for the second time that day, (and it wasn’t even noon) I felt my life would soon be sucked down the drain if I didn’t do something to change up my routine. I no longer had time to myself when my son was born. Every minute I devoted myself to caring for him. Wake, feed, play, sleep, am I right? That’s why I want to tell you how to regain your pre-motherhood identity through reading.
Don’t get me wrong, I love my son. I have never felt a fiercer love until he was born, but after going through the motions for a few months, I knew something had to change. My old self was hidden under the bubbles in the sink, just out of reach like the remote while nursing. And I know I’m not the only one.
Motherhood Changes You
I’m here to assure you that you can regain your pre-motherhood identity through returning to some of the hobbies that defined you. Here at The Mama Book Bear, I want to get you reading again.
You can regain your pre-motherhood identity by returning to some of the hobbies that defined you.
I remember sitting in the parking lot of my son’s daycare with my husband. At this point, my husband noticed I had given up on reading, and with it, a lot of my old hobbies. See, reading has always been a passion of mine. I majored in English for goodness’ sake! I read under my desk in high school if I thought the class was boring. And I usually had two, three, or even four books going at the same time when I was in middle school.
Reading Was Difficult
Up until I had my son, reading was my favorite pastime, and now it had become a sore subject. But I gave up when I realized I would just fall asleep every time I started reading anyway because I was up six times the previous night nursing my son.
I started to tell myself I didn’t need to read. That I was doing fine without it, but deep down, I knew I wasn’t okay with it. Reading was at my core and without it, a part of me was starting to wither.
My husband asked me if he could do anything to help so I could get back to the book that had sat on my nightstand for months. I soon felt angry every time I looked at the cover, but why? Because motherhood was starting to overshadow my own identity. Sure, I want to be the best mom for my son, but that doesn’t mean I have to let myself go in the process. Not only am I a mother, but I am also a wife, a daughter, a sister, a friend, a co-worker, a reader.
Ask for Help
It took me a while to realize that it was okay to let my husband help with the dishes, clean up after dinner, run a load of laundry, all so I could sit in my favorite spot on the couch to read. Once I let go of the need to do everything, to let someone else take care of me for once, I was able to return to my favorite hobby. I give a lot of credit to picking up an exciting mystery book, otherwise, it may have taken me longer to get back into the habit of reading.
Once I let go of the need to do everything, to let someone else take care of me for once, I was able to return to my favorite hobby.
I want you to know, mama bear, that you don’t have to give up on the you that you were before you had your baby. You don’t have to give up on reading, baking, cooking, knitting, or whatever else it is you do for fun! You’re still you, just living with a small piece of your heart beating on the outside.
So, go peruse the shelves, get lost at the library, scan the titles, and feel free to judge that book by the cover. (Who hasn’t read a book just for the cover anyway?) You deserve it because you need that time to yourself, just like everyone else. I’ve read a lot of books and I hope that the recommendations here at The Mama Book Bear will show you how to regain your pre-motherhood identity through reading. Yes, leave that sink of dishes alone for the next hour and pick something out!
If you enjoyed this article, be sure to share it! You can follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter. You might also like my article, 3 Reasons Why We Feel Guilty Practicing Self-Care (and How to Stop Feeling Guilty). It’s about why we, as moms, feel guilty when he take time for ourselves, and how we can stop that guilt in its tracks.