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my real reel: breastfed toddler, insomnia and my brutiful life as a Mom at 40

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REAL LIFE right here. I call it my “real” reel. Isn’t it brutiful? (Credit for this perfect description of motherhood goes to Glennon Doyle Wambach. BRUTAL+ BEAUTIFUL= BRUTIFUL.) It resonates with me.

I am a 40 year old first time mom. For 20 years I was up religiously at 5:30am rearing to get my workday started, full of energy, well rested, worked out, well groomed, clear minded with a full planned agenda. Life is not like that now. I chose to be a stay at home mom (I am grateful to be able to run our company from anywhere. That said, many days I know would be much easier at a workplace. This was my hardest transition in motherhood: the ME to WE. My life now runs on a different clock.

Clock says 10:00. That’s AM. Yes I slept until 10am. That’s sunshine peeking through the bathroom door. I woke up three times during the night from kicks to my ribs and then insomnia stuck at about 4. I grabbed through the shadows for a book on my nightstand. “Beautiful Chaos” by R M Drake. How fitting. Thank God I love to read. Since becoming a Mom I get most of my reading done at these wee hours. Though 60% of those books I have yet to start. I keep them there to give me something to look forward to...or to taunt me with reminders of how much I don’t get done while doing so much lately. Parenthood is a funny paradigm like that.

Then my almost 4 year old- who co-sleeps with us and still breastfeeds- wanted nee nee at 5:30, so to keep the house quiet for a few more hours, I pulled out my boob, plugged her in and fell back asleep.

Until a second after my husband took this picture...i woke right up. because I am a light sleeper and hear every click and because I told him the day before that I have hardly any photos of me and “would you please take more photos of me and Scarlett?” So here it is. My photo of me and Scarlett. Proof also that I do sleep.

One of the greatest blessings of becoming a first time mom at 40, is that most of my friends’ kids were graduating, getting married or having grand babies when Scarlett was just born. They would weep over how fast their own children grew up and remind me daily to cherish each day of this short phase of my child’s life. They helped me to slow down and be in each moment and not wish any of it away.

motherhood: everything you could have ever asked for, packaged nothing like what you would ever expect. And it’s all BRUTIFUL. My brutiful perfectly messy overflowing real life. ❤️


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