The motherhood chronicles: “Don’t be quick to judge”

Most mothers will be familiar with this, “judging a mother or father consciously or unconsciously before you became infected by the parenthood bug.” When I take a look at myself now compared to the era of BK ( Before kids), I see a significant change in my perception to life and I have had to let go of certain habits to be a better mum and person.

Before………….

In the BK era, I couldn’t stand seeing disgusting things like people spitting, soiled washrooms and any disgusting image you can imagine. Almost everyone cannot stand these sights but mine was on a different level. The mere sight of any disgusting thing meant I had to brush my teeth or rinse my mouth plus psychologically get my mind to erase the picture. That would take hours before even daring to touch anything or eat. I could even stay hungry till the brainwash process was complete. I used to say that whenever I had a kid, I would hire someone to do that job (changing of diapers) for me. That was how bad it was.

After……….

You should see me now. Those things still disgust me though. People should be sanctioned for indiscriminate spitting, that really gets on my nerves. I remember the first stinky poop after the meconium (black sticky poop), I was about eating some red red (fried ripe plantain with beans stew) and had to change her diaper. I was torn between eating first (satisfying my selfish self) or changing her diaper (satisfying her at the risk of losing my appetite).  Was that even an option? We brought them into this world when they were sitting their somewhere (direct translation from twi). It  also actually looked similar to the beans stew. The BK me would have let the food pass but I went straight to chowing (eating) after changing her diaper and washing my hands.

You know the bible verse: Matthew 7:1 ‘Judge not that you be not judged.’ I used to wonder how people handled their phones to end up with scratches and looking like the cat had a scratch fight with it. I considered them careless because I could really keep a phone and it would still look almost new. Apologies to anyone I misjudged. You should see my phone in the AK era, the phone is really suffering. In fact if you find a phone with no cracks in my house then it’s probably brand new and yet to go through the initiation rites. Little boss lady drops it in water (don’t know what scientific hypothesis she wants to test) and throws it away in a fit of tantrum like she has been hired by the manufacturer to test its strength and durability.

I used to wonder what could make families consistently late to church. My idealist mind just couldn’t decipher this. I get it now. I am usually late to church about 10 to 30 minutes. One time we got to church and mass had almost ended, we just drove through the church and went back home. You wake up early though, but getting a kid ready for work or school is a difficult task. Imagine packing up for a 2 to 3 days trip, yup…..now that’s similar to packing your kids stuff just for a few hours away from home. I try packing a day before but the funny thing that still beats my mind is that I still end up spending the same time. Your CHILD might also keep you awake all night and you would end up waking up late to church. As for alarms forget it! Sometimes if it wasn’t for the snooze I would have concluded that my alarm was faulty. I probably need one of those slapping alarm devices to wake me up.

The BK me had time to go shopping for clothes or shoes for occasions but now even managing to look good is a luxury. Not forgetting getting to the office or church with food or dirt stains. Wig caps and crochet braids are now my best hair pals. No long Rasta things. Oh and before I forget, am still wearing old clothes and I keep lying to myself that a wardrobe change was needed about 2 years ago. I still tell myself this and never act on it. I however manage to miraculously make time to shop for my kids. 🙂

I like things to be perfect but I realised in the kingdom of children you should let your guard down, have fun and be perfectly imperfect.

OMT

Through all this, I have learnt not to prematurely form conclusions and judge others (not only parents) if I haven’t yet taken a step in their shoes.

What’s your story? What habits have you had to change for your kids sake? We would love to hear from you.

Also check out our post on Daily Struggles of a Mother: My Top 5 on the hubpages!

My experiences as a mum- Eunice

If you missed the first post, it’s not too late to catch up…………Naana’s story.

Our mother for this week is Eunice Abbey and her story is surely worth the read. After reading her story, you have no RIGHT to give up on pursuing your dreams just because you are married and have a family………..

Her story begins………………..

Two weeks after my marriage, I had the opportunity to pursue my Master’s Degree in Norway. Whilst I had the unflinching support of husband to go, there were others who saw this as a ‘taboo’. How do you leave your husband behind after just two weeks of marriage? Well, I finally left and God being so good, he opened the same door for my husband a month later so we were finally reunited as a couple in Europe for two years.

I must say I was lucky to have escaped the pressure to give birth almost immediately after marriage given that, no baby was coming after almost four years into my marriage. I had my miracle baby girl second year into my PhD program in one of the universities in Hong Kong. I was in Ghana for data collection then and so I had the enormous support of my family taking care of the baby.

I was ‘slapped’ in the face with the realities of motherhood when I had to return to Hong Kong for studies. Should I leave my baby behind or not? She was only five months then and still breast-feeding. Again, many voices came in. Many said I could not cope with studies and motherhood so I should leave the baby behind.  I completely ruled out the possibility of deferring as the program was and still is no easy task. Deferring also meant losing my scholarship as I would not be able to complete within my given period. Deferral was out for me. Every new mum knows that feeling of being separated from your baby, I just could not deal with that.  I followed my heart, trusted God and took my baby along without knowing how it would all turn out. All these while, office duties had carried my husband outside Ghana so there was no way he could be of help physically.

Alone with my baby with no assistance from anyone, it took two weeks for us to settle in our new environment. I did my shopping in bits as I had to carry my daughter with me everywhere I went. My hands were full all the time, my schedules were tighter, I gave up most of my hobbies but none of these could surpass the joy of being with my baby.

I went to classes with my little scholar and attended every seminar with her, my supervisor and classmates were super helpful during these periods. They were tolerant when her ‘babyish’ syndrome set in. I had a friend who baby sat her for two hours whilst I did my second key presentation which I had only two days to prepare for. I did an excellent job by God’s grace. This meant a lot to me as I could not proceed to the next academic level without this presentation.

There were few times when I cried but most of the times, I laughed and was very happy with this whole experience. I did no academic work during the day time. It was completely dedicated to watching cartoons, learning rhymes, picking strolls and playing with my baby. My serious and effective academic works were from midnight onward when she went on her long sleep. My sleeping hours depreciated significantly as well.

Now in my final year and still on every move with my baby, I have not regretted bringing her along with me to Hong Kong. It was worth it, I have bonded well with her and God has been faithful. As I wrap up for the last ‘blast’ of my PhD somewhere next year, I am so used to my new routine which has also become my new hobby. I am so loving my experience as a new mum, honestly stressing but also a blessing.

To all new mums, potential mums and everyone reading this, never say it is impossible when you have not started or tried it. Follow your heart, trust God and you can do all things!

Eunice Adusei

Share your stories with other young mothers by sending an email to omtsdigest@gmail.com. You can opt to be anonymous if you would be uncomfortable sharing your personal information.

Join the family on twitter with the hashtag #moderndaysuperheroines

You never know, but the simplest of life experiences can just be the strong motivational force in the life of another. Sharing makes the difference…..

OMT

“Share your life with others. You will have a joyful life.” 

― Lailah Gifty Akita