Written By Christina Kanu (@MissKanu)
When Jayce was first born I had a list of things I wanted to do to capture my journey as a mother. I wanted to write a blog post every month. I was very ambitious. That is why it has taken me months to write this. I have been capturing my journey via photos, diary entries, and random notes ion my phone. However, I wanted to be able to share publicly. I decided this week that come what May I would write on the day Jayce turned six months. So here I am baby on the boob and laptop in my lap. I am just going to let the words flow so this will truly be a stream of consciousness post.
When I found out I was pregnant in October 2016 I was scared. I didn’t know how all of this would work out. I knew my life would be different. No longer would it be about me. There are so many things women take for granted before becoming a mom. I used to come home and take naps until I felt like waking up. I am not sure what a nap is anymore. Or the ease of deciding to go out for a night with the girls. Also, my 5 AM gym sessions had to cease. The list goes on and on.
But the beautiful thing about pregnancy is that it is long (40 weeks and 1 day for me). I had time to reflect and prepare for the changes. I did lots of reading, had plenty of conversations, and most importantly I prayed. I don’t think I have ever prayed the way I did when I was pregnant. I was nervous about birth. The concept of contractions scared me. Everything was overwhelming. I remember the last week of my pregnancy I was in a MOOD. I was fat, tired, in pain, and over it. I asked Jayce every second of every day to just come on out. I was sick of everyone telling me “In God’s time” or “At the right moment he will come”. At one point I locked myself in my room, put on my headphones, and just read. I didn’t want to be bothered or disturbed. My actual due date was June 8th. I should have known that Jayce would be stubborn like his parents. On June 8th my labor started but it was on June 9th at 5:13 PM at Emory University Hospital that we met our beautiful baby boy Jayce Carter Kofi Wells.
The moment I saw Jayce I cried. Actually, the moment Jason told me that Jayce had so much hair I cried. My birthing process was everything I wanted it to be. I had an epidural, I had music playing, and I didn’t throw up during labor. I am terrified of vomit. When I heard Jayce cry and I saw his face, I immediately knew what love actually is. He was perfect. Every mother says that about their kids. And as a mother I completely get it. I was exhausted from the birthing process. I told Jason before I had Jayce that after he was born I wanted a ginger ale. I didn’t care where he got it from or how far he had to go. I knew I wanted a ginger ale. Very random request but I knew I needed it. The first night at the hospital I couldn’t stop staring at Jayce. I barely slept. Little did I know that the next few weeks would be the initiation that babies put their parents through.
People would ask me how I was and the answer was “tired”. The level of exhaustion I felt was real. I hate the saying of “sleep when the baby sleeps”. That doesn’t work all of the time. Moms have to eat, cook, clean, do laundry, pay bills, breathe, etc. I was eating breakfast at lunch time and lunch at dinner time. My concept of time was completely off. I was always busy with Mom Life. But I loved every single minute of it. I wanted my time with Jayce to be special. Was I stressed? Yes. Was I exhausted? Yes. Did I miss going out with my friends? Of course. But I knew that to be a mother is a gift. This is something that not everyone gets to do. So I didn’t complain about the dirty diapers. I didn’t complain about the spit up. I didn’t complain about missing out on events and activities. I just lived in the moment with my baby.
My goal as a mother was never to be perfect. I didn’t want to be the perfect mother. I just wanted to be perfect for Jayce. I wanted to be able to expose him to so many things as a baby. I knew he wouldn’t remember everything but we would have pictures and stories. Once I was able to really move around we went everywhere. I took Jayce on my client visits, to the store, to the pool, on the plane, to the library, to church, and everywhere else. We would sing, dance, play, laugh, read, and snuggle. I wanted every day to be an adventure for him. I learned how to truly mind my business the moment I became a mother. I didn’t want to get caught up in what other people were doing or how they were raising their kids. My mother told me something profound “All the love you have in your heart give it to Jayce. He deserves it”. So that is what I decided to do. Love Jayce with my ENTIRE heart. It is easy as a mother to become consumed with so many other things as opposed to focusing on your child. Whether it is love, social media, work, business, school, friendships, etc. I am not saying I don’t want to focus on other things because of course, I do. But I also never want anything to come between raising Jayce. He is just that important to me.
I was nervous about my postpartum body. I didn’t know if I would lose weight or if it would stay on. My boobs got bigger because I was nursing. My stomach slowly started to go down. And I remained thick as I was before I became a mother. People talked about my “snap back”. And I would be a liar if I didn’t say that I wasn’t happy to have snapped back as quickly as I did. But I still have some work to do. There are some things I put on and I am not happy with the way I look. I have had to change my outfit a million times because things don’t fit how I would like them to. Something that also happened was the thinning of my hair. In the front of my hair I realized my hair was thinning. I was freaking out and had to work hard to get my hair to grow back. Every day when I have my insecure moments I remind myself “YOU JUST HAD A BABY CALM DOWN”. We have to put things into perspective.
Transitioning back to work was exciting. I cried the first day I took him to the sitter but I was fine the next day. It is even more tiring working a long day and having mother duties to tend to. We have found a system that works for us and that has made all of the difference. I am usually ready to pass out at 9 PM. I am up around 5:30 AM-6:00 AM during the week. I try to use that early morning time for prayer, thinking, and listening to music.
My parenting relationship with Jason has truly been a journey. I am happy that we are great friends and no matter what put Jayce first. Something I have learned and observed is the importance of keeping a majority of things that pertain to your child between parents and that is it. Not all information is for the masses. It is incredibly important to preserve a healthy relationship between parents and be mindful of not letting anything or anyone destroy that relationship. It is so important to both of us that Jayce knows that he is loved and that his parents respect one another.
I can truly say that my relationship with my Mother has been everything since I became a mother. We talk everyday and she helps me navigate through grey areas. She has taught me so much and I would have failed without her.She is truly my best friend and I hope to be like her as I continue my motherhood journey.
I have had such a strong support system of family, friends, and my sorority sisters. People have truly taken to Jayce and are willing to do anything for him. His godparents are truly from heaven. They look out for this little boy no matter what the circumstance is. It is important to have a village of people when you have kids. I believe there is a village and then there is an even more intimate village. The intimate village is there on a consistent basis and knows what to do without being asked. I am grateful for the people in both. My job as a mother would be impossible without them.
I don’t know everything about being a mother. I am learning daily. All I know is that I love Jayce with my entire soul. As long as I continue to love him everything else will get figured out. Cheers to six months of motherhood and cheers to many more months to come. Thank you God for my little boy.
Miss Christina Kanu