I love how I live in a part of the world where we get four seasons. I love when I wake up early and step outside and the crisp air washes over my face. The dew on the grass is no longer frozen and the sun grazes the grass’s wetness, causing  my eyes to squint in its reflection. Spring is here.

You know that feeling when you can sense the change of seasons? You can see the little clues from day to day. The trees start looking greener. The crisp air turns into a cool morning air that will lift as soon as the sun is high.

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I tend to associate memories and moments with nature’s little clues. When the yellow flowers bloom on our ground cover, I am reminded of my grandmothers and great aunts I never got to meet. I have a touch of them with the flower I dug up from their old house to keep alive in my front yard. When our lilac bush blooms in the spring and its scent carries through our kitchen window, I am taken back to when I was a young girl waking early in the summer, dying to go outside and play.

When spring approached this year and April turned into May, I can’t help but remember my life before I was a mom. I was a teacher before I became a mom who decided to stay home. Anyone who knows a teacher knows May is a love-hate relationship for us. We love that the year is winding down, but tend to grow old of the tiring behavior students inevitably carry during those last few weeks.

When I step outside these mornings, I am reminded of the feelings of excitement and giddiness I used to have this time of year. Excitement for the plans I would make for myself for the summer. Excitement while driving to school with the windows down because the cool air was teetering on being warm. The rush you get when you decide that it’s too beautiful outside to stay cooped up indoors. I miss those feelings about teaching.

I miss my life before I was a mom.

I miss life before this new responsibility weighed heavy on me. I miss life before my schedule had to accommodate these little humans’ needs. I miss my life when my husband and I could go out to eat at the drop of a hat. Or we could go see friends whenever we wanted. I miss being able to binge watch some TV show on Netflix during the summer. I loved being able to cook big, awesome meals for my husband when I was feeling inspired because time was not an issue. I miss traveling to see our families more frequently.

Why is it when we make big changes in our lives we feel like can no longer say we like or miss what we did before? Especially when we become parents?

Why do we get this feeling of guilt if we say we miss the life we had before our children? Is it because we are afraid people will think we regret having kids? Is it because we’re afraid people will think we love our kids less? Why can’t we miss what we used to do, but still enjoy what we’re doing now?

I miss my life before I was a mom. I love my life as a mom. That’s all there is to it.

My responsibilities these days do weigh heavy. But not every day. Not all the time. High fevers and sleepless nights will be a thing of the past.

Being able to see friends whenever we want has changed. Now we have to plan and schedule a babysitter, but that doesn’t mean my friendships vanished. It has made me more purposeful in my friendships than what I was before. I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to binge watch TV anymore, but that’s what early bedtimes are for, right? Right?!

Now as May unfolds I have new excitements. Taking the kids to the pool. Having our annual cookout with some friends. Watching my daughter figure out how to walk. Planning a trip to see our family on Memorial Day weekend. The excitement has changed, but I still have it. I still have the excitement that comes when the seasons change and I will always remember the excitement I had before I was a mom. I still love that feeling as the air changes.

No matter what seasons I go through, I will forever be a mom. 

What about you? Do you ever feel this way?

This post originally appeared on www.gloryannaboge.com