Recently I have been having some issues with my self-esteem. Shocker, right? I’ve been constantly wondering if my boyfriend has been looking at other girls, or comparing me to that hot chick, or wishing I was more like that girl he saw on Instagram. I keep wondering if I am making him happy, in bed, in life. I wonder if he really is ‘just tired’ or he sees the extra me that has stuck around after the baby. I wonder if he still sees me as who I used to be before the kid. It seems my feeling of self-esteem is in two phases throughout my life: before baby and after baby.
I just don’t feel hot.
I feel ‘mom hot’
Now, let’s not get this confused with ‘hot mom.’ Because they are two completely different ideas. See, ‘hot mom’ is what your son’s friends call you when you pick him up from soccer practice in shorts, a tank top, and flip-flops, late because you were planting new flowers in the front lawn and covered in dirt and sweat. Sorry son, (if I ever have you) but I will be honored when your friends think I could be a stripper. I’ll wear that shit like a badge of honor when I’m feeling old and far from sexy.
No, ‘mom hot’ is a whole other evil. If you don’t see the difference, let me explain…
‘Mom hot’ is excited you don’t have food on your clothes and in your greasy hair and it’s already 10am.
‘Mom hot’ is excited your eyeliner is still sticking around after you got crazy the other day during nap time and attempted makeup. Today we call it a smokey eye, who cares if it looks more like Ozzy.
‘Mom hot’ is wearing an almost freshly cleaned pair of yoga pants and a cute top to get that “I just threw this on and still look amazing but whatever, I didn’t try” vibe that other moms seem to pull off so well.
‘Mom hot’ is finding a new topic to talk about with your boyfriend other than your cracked nipples and your kid’s bowel movements that day.
‘Mom hot’ is talking to girls your age without kids and feeling like a total fucking outsider who doesn’t belong. Like, really, y’all don’t know about colostrum?
‘Mom hot’ is feeling like a mom. Just a mom, and very little like a woman.
Now, before I get berated for not being happy with being a mom: that’s not it. I am completely in love with my daughter and my boyfriend. I never imagined I could be this excited about every day with a weird little bald puppy human. The problem is, I feel like a mother first and a woman second.
And I’m going to change that.
I don’t plan on changing my parenting style. I will still momma-bear the fuck out of anyone who messes with my kid. But I am going to start changing my outlook on what it means, to me, to be a mother.
When I think about what I need to change, I find mainly it is how I see myself. It would be easy to blame it on my boyfriend for not being Nicholas fucking Sparks type of sweet all the time but that’s just not him and I am totally ok with that. I could easily blame him for not noticing little things that no one would notice besides me or not telling me I’m sexy enough but he is not the problem. I am. And therefore I am the only person who will be able to make a difference in this.
I am going to find myself hot again. I am going to let myself walk down the street and think the stares in my direction are because someone finds me attractive, and not because they are trying to figure out what is stuck in my hair.I am going to give myself and my body the respect it deserves. I’m not going to worry about the extra skin and stretch marks, but I am going to work out to feel healthy and proud. I am going to remember that to be the mom that I am, I was a woman first.
I am going to take the time for myself to do my hair and makeup a few days a week and put effort into how I dress. I am going to invest in myself enough to get clothes that fit and that make me feel fucking fabulous. And I am going to feel even better that I got it for $5 from Goodwill because thrift stores are my bitch.
I am going to try to see myself how my boyfriend sees me (even from those weird angles that every guy likes and every girl doesn’t understand.) I am going to TRY not to shoot down his compliments because I know how much he hates it when I do and I know how much I hate that he doesn’t see himself the way that I see him.
And I am hoping this will help me. I am hoping even more though, that it will help my daughter. I don’t want her growing up watching me worry and obsess over how I look and seeing me constantly down myself. I want her to grow up seeing me take pride in myself and my appearance and help her learn to be powerful and proud of who she is.
I am going to be hot again, god dammit.