Being A Mom Again… Now What?

It still feels surreal to be a mom again. After being a foster mom to 3 amazing children, and all 3 reuniting with their biological families (over 50% do in LA County), there is an overwhelming sense of relief to know this time it is forever. A luxury I have not known until now.

My husband and I have been hoping and trying to add to our family for over 5 years. On our flight home to Los Angeles, I kept leaning over to my husband and saying, “We have a son.” I just stared at him for 4 hours, hard to believe we had what we had been believing for so long. An absolute dream come true. I had stared at him a lot during the 12 days leading up to our flight home, but this time without the fear or worry that I would have to give him back.

I have a son. His name is Rocco.

On the plane, I couldn’t help but think… now what?

After 5 years of medical tests, a myriad of paper work, social worker visits, home studies, scrapbooks, heartbreak, waiting for the phone to ring to say you have been chosen… now what?

My now what has been a bit chaotic. The first 2 weeks we were in another state, the next week we came home to extreme water damage to our house (including the nursery), and then last week Rocco was in the hospital for 4 days with an infection. So far, we are at 6 days with life being normal at home, minus the water damage.

In between sleeping at Children’s Hospital and finding a contractor to fix our house, I have kept myself busy. I have cared for Rocco, read 3 books, made laundry detergent, done extensive research on cloth diapering and formula, started a puzzle, made soup from scratch, built and launched a blog. If I lived during Jesus time, Martha would be my best friend.

It is challenging to transition into rest when you have been fighting for something for so long. Not that caring for a newborn is rest, but if you have battled like we have, midnight feeds are a reward. Like Martha, in Luke 10, I was distracted, filling my time with tasks. I have fought long and hard to be a mom. I don’t want to miss it.

I have to admit, I was anxious (not in a good way) to be on maternity leave. I have had a job since I was 13, and never taken more than 8 days off for vacation. 8 weeks seemed daunting. Now it feels too short.

So I have decided to change how I manage the now what.

Enjoy it. Every diaper change, feeding time, blow out, burp and snuggle. Savor it. Remember it. Take a picture of it. Thank God for it. Don’t miss it. (PS Rocco is sleeping while I write.)

I know God has called me to be more than a mom. I return to work in 3 weeks. Work that I absolutely love and have dedicated my life to. The tasks will be there, I don’t need to create work today. Today, I just need to enjoy the now what of being a mom and spending this time fully with my son.

Any moms have advice on how you made the most of your maternity leave? Please comment.

9 thoughts on “Being A Mom Again… Now What?

  1. Kristen, congratulations and many blessings for your family. As far as your question, I think the best thing I did was learn to say no. No to volunteering. No to answering the phone if I was with my baby. No to the crumbs I left on the counter. To focus on those who were most important to me, I had to decide what NOT to focus on anymore. There will be time for all these things later or another day. It is a very hard, conscious decision I learned to make. Hope this helps you too!!

  2. That’s awesome!! I’m so excited for u guys!! I spent a lot of time talking to my kids, taking pictures writing down all the sweet moments I did not want to forget and did not allow myself to think about work. I really just sat still and went in walks with my kids and layers in the floor with them and prayed over them a lot. U are such an awesome mom!! Hats off to u for making laundry detergent! Love ya

  3. Kristen, I can’t express in words how happy I am for you. My advice is to just do exactly what you’ve decided to do and enjoy every moment of your maternity leave. It really does go by way too fast.
    And knowing your work ethic first hand :), I know the juggle you’ll experience when back at work. But knowing how passionate you are about what you do and then how dedicated you are to being a mother, you will find a balance between the two.

    We certainly live a blessed life. I look forward to future blogs my friend. xo

  4. So excited for you guys!

    Regarding your question, I think enjoying and savoring each moment is the right idea. It goes by so fast.

  5. LOVE that you’re a mom again! And that you are finally home and able to fully enjoy the moments. I think you’ve got the right idea for making the most…Forget the tasks for a bit. They’ll always be there. Just enjoy the small moments. I’m still telling myself that same thing!

  6. I am so happy for you and Justin! I never did take a specific time for maternity leave..i did start working again part time within the first 8 months i would say, at nights or on call (i work as a doula/second attendant for home births) ..but if i felt like i wanted to stop or change my mind about hours, etc..i did and would stop for awhile. I guess my advice isn’t for a time, it’s just general advice. I try to be present as much as possible, and when i am with them i try not to text or be on the phone if it’s not a task that needs doing (this can be challenging as i am pretty sure i have ADD!) I try to take my 90 year old self’s advice…do less, and just be with them more…you will not regret working less to be with your kids more.

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