Updated: May 13
Potete leggere questo articolo in Italiano qui.
I am an introvert friendly person. I value the few friends I have, I prefer being surrounded by a small group of people rather than large groups, I enjoy the solitude, I prefer calm environments and I feel that I am consuming energy when I have to socialize with unknown persons. You know? The negative side of being an introvert is that people think we are rude and arrogant, but I accepted the fact that I cannot change their perception.
While pregnant I was preparing myself for what it would be like being a mom. I knew that my body would change and it would take a while to get bak on track, I knew the sleep deprivation would be part of my routine and that I would spend my time between feeding, cleaning and soothing my baby. I also knew I would be alone, as I moved to a new country where I knew just a few people. But, being an introvert, I just thought that it would not be a problem being alone with my baby.
Few months after becoming a mom, a stay-at-home mom, I felt that my life was stuck on repeat. There were days when I felt a deep sadness, a feeling I was not able to control, others when I cried alone and others when I woke up with a smile on my face asking myself to ignore my feelings. I started feeling lonely, somehow abandoned and isolated, not having with whom to share my feelings and my thoughts or sometimes refusing to share them because I felt ashamed. ”For God’s sake, it’s something normal, I am a mom and I have to focus on my baby!” I said to myself many times.
I was actually never alone but most of the time I felt so and this probably was associated with the fact that I totally disconnected from my past life. I tend to believe that even going back to work would not change the things in the first instance, because the newborn requires much care and attention and this would leave no time to pursue my personal interests. But I do believe that returning to work after, say, 6 months, having a baby sitter for a couple of hours or sending the baby to the day-care can help mothers to win back a part of their past personal life.
Also, feeling friendless doesn’t help. This does not mean I don’t have friends, but that they have their own personal lives, they may be parents themselves, which would make it difficult to match the free time.
One last thing that made me feel lonely was the lack of conversation. I don’t mean lack of talking, as I could speak with people simply going out for a walk. What I was missing was a proper conversation, the exchange of thoughts and opinions.
Later on I decided to speak to my husband, who is always very tender and attentive about my feelings, because I realised that I needed time for me. I needed just a bit of personal time to take care of myself! And, as we had nobody to look after the baby during the week, we agreed that he would do that full time on Saturdays and I would take that day off. The cons of this agreement was that our family time was halved, thus the full day off soon became a few hours.
Sometimes I still felt overwhelmed, but I knew that I was not alone and that sooner rather than later everything would be sorted out.
When our baby turned 17 months we decided to enrol him in a day-care . After 2 months, I must say that it was a great decision! I have the time I need for myself, I write articles like the one you are reading now and I can drink my coffee in silence!
Motherhood is not easy and sometimes makes us women forget our needs and of who we really are.
What I learned from all of this is that asking for help is much better than to fry in your own grease!