Confidence Through Motherhood

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I suppose when I think about it I have always had a fairly healthy level of confidence even if it was a more superficial sense.  I had you basic "Yeah sure...I'm okay" level of appreciation for myself and for my body and never thought I was any less or more than average.  In a way it was good because I was happy with myself but the problem was that I never strived, in anything, to be more than average.  I didn't have the type of confidence that drives a person to accomplish more.


I didn't, that is, until I became a Mother.


From the first moments I found out I was expecting, something inside me began to change.  I looked at my changing body in a different way; realising that what my body was doing was a true miracle.  I gained a newfound amazement in myself and in my body and this feeling climaxed in the moments of my son's first breaths.  I looked over at him, a brand new life where there wasn't one before and it was there because of me.  All of the possibilities and potential of that life kind of flashed before my eyes and it made me feel like God.


Life as a Mother was a whole new ball game.  I was responsible for this whole other person and suddenly being average didn't seem like good enough anymore.  I navigated through the first year doing my best but always knowing that I should be striving to do better for my son and future children.  I went through tremendous personal growth during my sons first year.  I learned so much about myself and about life, and came out of that first year with valuable life lessons.  My confidence was still growing.


At the end of that first year, I learned I was expecting a second baby.  I remember thinking "Wow, I'm screwed" and the thought of 2 babies under 2 was mind blowing.  With mixed feelings, of confidence and doubt, I prepared for the arrival of a second precious life to come into this world.


Now, my first birthing experience was actually quite traumatic.  It was more like a 9 day long nightmare.  This experience left me slightly terrified but also slightly determined to take a little more control which is something I didn't have the confidence to do before.  My second birth ended up being a much more enjoyable experience for me although I let my fear take control and agreed to be induced and eventually to an epidural.  I did insist on rooming with my daughter even though the nurses suggested on several occasions that I send her to the nursery so I can get some sleep.  I also insisted on going home early the next day even though my doctor suggested I stay in the hospital one more night to make sure breastfeeding was well established.  The instincts within me were becoming a little more defined.


The real change within me when I looked down at my 1 month old nursling, all chubby and thriving and realised that it was my body and only my body who had sustained this precious life.  My body did just as it was supposed to and produced the milk to nourish my baby...no bottles, no formula just me.  At that moment, I felt a wave of realisation come over me; I was extraordinary  


The experiences of Womanhood and Motherhood are incredibly powerful and for some of us they are the defining moments of our life, as without them we wouldn't be the fierce women we are today.  I believe with all my heart, that for me this true.  The place of deep understanding and appreciation for my self that I have attained through experiencing motherhood could not have been reached any other way and i am forever grateful to my children for giving me those experiences.


One of the reasons why these thoughts are important to me right now, is because I am about to embark on yet another womanly experience--natural childbirth.  With all that I have learned, how could I walk away from this experience?  This is something that every single one of my fore Mother's experienced before me, since the beginning of time.  That's heavy!  It will connect me to them, and it will give me their same wisdom.  I know this in my heart.
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