The Mother I Hope to Be
by Chelsea Becker, Editorial contributor
As I countdown the days until my due date, I’m feeling all the feels. From excitement to anxiousness to fear and everything in between, shit is getting real! Being a Type A person, I’ve found myself focused on all of these “lists” to set me up for motherhood. But this past weekend I realized something I haven’t given much attention to - the mom I want to be. I’m honestly a bit embarrassed to admit that, but somewhere along all the surface planning, I haven’t spent much time thinking of myself as a mom. Sure, my husband and I have talked about it here and there, but that’s about it.
I took this past week to really dig into the topic internally. I read up on our series here, talked to my own mom, reflected on my childhood, and thought about all the mothers I admire. While this topic might not fit a “list” - it’s so much more than that - lists are how I roll. So with that, some points I kept coming to when thinking of the type of mother I want to be:
Flexible - Being a structured person who lives for routine, this will be hard. But I know that motherhood comes with endless unplanned moments, unforeseen tantrums, sleepless nights, and everything else you can’t plan for. I’m working on letting more ‘flow’ into my life until baby boy arrives and hope to find flexibility among routine once he’s here. Especially since I noticed that my own childhood didn’t always have flexibility and it’s probably one of the reasons I have a hard time going with the flow now.
Healthy - I’m a huge advocate for overall health. Self-love, being active, and caring for your mental health are all things I want to instill as a mom. I plan on providing nourishing meals for my family (any suggestions for healthy, kid-friendly meals?), spending more time in nature than in front of devices, being honest with my son and opening up dialogue to talk about mental health and feelings, and to keep up my own self-care routine as much as possible.
Sensitive - I struggle with sensitivity. I cry maybe once a year (A Star is Born didn’t draw a single tear, even while pregnant), and I’m generally not a sensitive person. But I know kids need sensitivity and I want my son to be sensitive to himself and others. I’m not sure how I’ll go about this yet - am open to suggestions!
Inclusive - When I think of what I want to teach my son, inclusion is at the top of my list. It’s VERY important to me that my son stands up for people, accepts all, and treats every person he meets equally. While my parents did this to an extent, I see so many areas where this could have been improved in my childhood. I plan on teaching by example here.
Fun - While I’m fun around others, I’m quick to nag my husband about a pair of socks as we’re having a great day - and essentially ruin the good vibes. I think a lot of people can be a buzzkill with our own families and forget to be that fun self that you give to others - and I’m guilty of this! I want to keep things light and fun in our home, to get creative during play time, to forget the loads of laundry if it means being silly with my family, and so on.
I’d love to hear from fellow mamas what words you wanted to intentionally encompass as a mom. How did you live those out once your kid came along? Any advice for the words I’m hoping to be?
Chelsea Becker is a San Francisco based writer, creator of becker editorial, and on the editorial team at MU. She’s expecting her first child this spring. For her thoughts on loving yourself during your first trimester click here, and a clean skincare routine here.