happy family

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It’s no secret that when you become a mom your life changes forever. Routines change, your attitude changes, and even your interests change. That isn’t a bad thing.

Believe it or not, parenthood can make your life easier…if you let it.

The early stages are rough, but I think people make parenthood more complicated than it needs to be.

Don’t get me wrong, being a mom is hard but having a baby can be a life-simplifier in some ways. It can help you prioritize your life, saving you energy and your sanity.

You struggle and learn to adapt to this new way of life. It starts out hard but gets easier, thankfully.

If someone would have told me what kind of person I would be now, I wouldn’t believe them.

Pre-baby, I used to be the kind of woman that sweat over the little things and let others influence my choices instead of doing what we best for me.

Things I stopped doing after having a baby that made life easier…

1.Worrying About What My House Looks Like

Before I gave birth, each room was guest ready and full of nice things to show off. You know, the on-trend and breakable kinds of things like vases with fresh flowers and ceramic statues.

It was nice but now it’s not nice enough to risk my little one breaking it into a million tiny pieces.

Now, almost everything purchased in our household must have practical use.  

We always ask, “How much use are we going to get out of this?” And “How much more cleaning will need to be done?” When you’re a mom, keeping it simple is a life saver.

Surprisingly, my home is far less cluttered than it was before being a parent. While we still get dust bunnies here and there, our stuff doesn’t collect dust out of lack of use. The result? Less cleaning and more money saved.

As for cleaning, there are areas of my house that aren’t maintained on the regular. The old me would be ashamed and bothered that it’s not spotless. Today, attention goes to high traffic areas of the house only. The rest I defer because it’s just not worth sweating over.

Is my home going to score any points on Pinterest? No, because I care less about impressing people by staging an image of a perfect family. The result? More stress-free quality time to spend with family.

2.Making Only-From-Scratch Meals (For Every Meal)

You won’t catch me in the kitchen for hours on end, elbow deep in food prep. Thankfully, I lost the desire to impress with chef status meals long ago.

After having my son, my focus was getting a nutritious and timely meal on the table WITH the help of my husband.

We are not old-fashioned and I’m not ashamed to say that I let my husband take over in the kitchen. Frankly, he doesn’t mind.

My goal is to make balanced meals in a reasonable amount of time, not creating Instagram worthy masterpieces. If cooking elaborate meals is your jam, power to you!

When we do have a fancy meal from scratch, we appreciate it and are more enthusiastic about it too.

Having a little one means I have to manage my time more efficiently and I see that as a blessing.

Less prep, less clean up and it saves much needed energy.

3.Worrying About My Appearance

It only took about three years, but I finally gained a healthy attitude on my appearance and stopped worrying about what people think.

All moms know that when you have kids your body changes. Reminding yourself that you grew, carried and birthed a baby. Don’t be hard on yourself.

I exercise and eat as healthy as I can, but I don’t consume myself with wanting six-pack abs, looking hot in a bikini or even fitting into clothes I wore in college.

I worry about more import things, like my overall health. How do I FEEL? Do I have energy? Can I keep up with my kids without pain or exhaustion?

There are more important things to worry about, simply put.

4.Feeling like I Need to Entertain My Child 24/7

Honestly, this is still a challenge for me, but I’ve accepted that I cannot be entertaining my child for hours in a day. Boredom is not a disease and it doesn’t need treatment. Not entertaining my child whenever he asks is not neglect either.

Children don’t need to be rescued from boredom the second they lose interest in something. After I realized that, it was a weight off my shoulders. I no longer feel guilty for not providing my son an endless supply of fun activities.

I learned that my child won’t crumble to pieces if I don’t play whenever he asks. It’s healthy for a child to be bored every now and then and it encourages independent play. Why would I want to hinder those learning opportunities?

5.Doing Everything Myself and Not Asking For Help

My first year being a parent was rough because I wanted to do it all and all by myself.

Why would I not ask for help? Why would I choose to do everything myself? Mainly because I had the false idea that good mothers are superwomen that can do it all and if I couldn’t then I wasn’t a good mom.

It didn’t help that I sought examples of new motherhood through social media. I know now that much of its staged and not realistic but at the time I wasn’t sure. They appear flawless in every area of life, so I felt I had to prove myself worthy of the title of mom.

It took a toll on my mental health and I was stuck in a mindset that made it difficult to let go of the ideal.

One day my husband asked me why I was doing so much when I should have been taking better care of myself. I’m thankful he did because I’m sure that I would still be a wreck today.

It’s vital that moms seek out support for the sake of your own health. It’s important to choose what’s right for you and your family.

I chose to let go of unrealistic expectations imposed on myself and by others. It’s just so exhausting to have to maintain such an idealized image of motherhood. It’s not worth it.

What is worth it? Being present with my family and being confident in my choices.

I hope that this list will inspire you live life on your terms and not on someone else’s.

What did you stop doing after having a baby that changed your life for the better?

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