Losing Yourself When You Become a Parent

Mother and daughter walking on beach

“You lose yourself when you become a parent.”

This can be heard in groups and read about in every corner online. There is no doubt you can become a different person when your babies enter your world. But is this as negative as many suggest? Sure, there are the parts of myself that I have “lost” but there are also new parts of myself I gained when I became a parent.

Loss: Selfishness  

Growing up an only child, I am used to my own space and doing things for myself. Having kids changed that for me. I now have to put these little people’s needs before mine several times a day every day. There isn’t room for selfishness when you live with a baby and a toddler. They need you to be there for them.

Loss: Shyness 

Only child and quiet, no more. Not only am I not quiet and shy with my kids but now with other adults I find myself being more open. Having kids has a way of bringing you out of your shell. Like when your two year old climbs into a claw machine at a game place. You quickly relate to other parents with the look on your face when you turn around and see that.

By losing these parts, I gained special parts that could only be given to me by becoming a mother. 

Gain: The ability to change someone’s day with something so small 

Have you ever given a two-year-old the perfect snack and their whole day is made? Their eyes light up and they are so thrilled that it makes you feel like you have changed their little world.

Gain: The opportunity to understand someone else’s feelings in a new, intense way

Nothing puts you in someone else’s shoes like trying to understand why your baby is crying or why your three-year-old is so excited about a rock he just found in the driveway. You have to dig deep to put yourself in those little shoes.

Gain: A greater love for my husband

There is something special about seeing your husband meet your baby for the first time or watching him experience the joy of hearing that same baby say dada. (They always seem to say dad first, don’t they?) 

This doesn’t mean I don’t have tough days or miss the time before kids. I always say I wish I could keep my husband and kids but go back to when my mom and dad took care of me. Life is tough and bringing little ones into your life can be challenging. It is something special to see the way you evolve as you become a parent. I know I am just at the beginning of my parenting journey and I am looking forward to seeing what else I lose and gain as a parent in each phase of our lives.

What did you lose or gain when you became a parent? 

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