The Momma Interviews is a new blog series by Catherine O'Brien, LMFT highlighting the thoughts, experiences and wisdom of a unique real-world mom each week, to normalize and validate the struggles and triumphs that are a part of the universally human experience of motherhood for women everywhere.
Want to be the next featured momma? You can sign up right here.
This week's interview is brought to you by military momma, Michelle Casey. Michelle does her best to split the parenting responsibilities with her hubs, a stay-home dad, 50/50. Cheers to this mom for finding her own calm in the motherhood storm!
HERE IS HER INTERVIEW:
How do you balance the mom, work, and relationship roles?
Since I am active duty [military] and the one that works, I try to take over as much responsibilities as I can when I get home. I will finish work, come home and take care of the baby so stay-at-home-daddy takes a break. After bed time, he and I will spend time together watching TV, playing games or just merely sitting with each other. On the weekends, baby responsibility is split in the middle.
Most moms I speak to say there are moments when they are ready to throw in the towel. Can you describe a time you felt this way? What got you through it?
When my son was a newborn. I was so tired that I could barely keep my eyes open, so full of anxiety that my son would develop SIDS. My fear was incredible. What got me through it was my husband encouraging me and taking the baby for a few hours so I could sleep.
WHAT DO YOU DO WHEN YOU FEEL OVERWHELMED, OVERSTRETCHED, OR LESS THAN?
I ask my husband to take the baby for a few minutes while I take a breather. I normally know my limits and he knows my social queues, so I normally don't ask a lot.
I've had parents tell me that one of the hardest things about being a parent is the comparisons and judgements from other parents. How do you personally cope with that?
I rant to my husband. It is so aggravating, but I know I can be honest with him and he will not judge me.
What is the great lesson you've learned as a mom?
Patience and calm is a huge in the home! The calmer you are, the calmer the room tends to be.
What is your favorite quote that inspires you as a mom?
I want to raise a child that doesn't have to recover from his/her childhood. Abuse was rampant in my family and I want my son to have a wonderful and loving childhood.
What is your favorite song that inspires you as a mom?
I honestly don't have one. All music besides angry reminds me of my son.
What is the one piece of advice you'd like to give to other moms?
Do not judge other moms or children. It is not your place to compare. Every single family and child is different. Unless serious harm is made, it shouldn't be an issue.
What do you feel is your greatest personal struggle with the experience of motherhood?
Patience and control. Learning that the baby has emotions and I cannot control that. I'm a perfectionist and a control freak so I've had to learn (slowly) how to let go.
How has your relationship with your partner changed? How has it stayed the same?
We are closer emotionally, but physically more distant. We are often very tired so we aren't as intimate like we'd like. Nothing is really quite the same.
How has your relationship with your friends, family or support system changed? How has it stayed the same?
Family is about the same. Support system is across the country and stays the same. Friends actually come over a lot more because they like be the baby!
What is something that has surprised you about being a mom (i.e. something you didn't realize you'd enjoy, something you didn't know babies/kids did, something you didn't know could bring so much joy)?
Talking with him! It's my favorite.
How many children do you have? (Include the special make-up of your family steps, adopted, guardianships, halves- or no details at all- up to you!)
Share your relationship status.