I Love Being a Mom, But I am More Than Just a Mom

I was happy. I married the man who I thought was the man of my dreams. We had our perfect little girl and a house, dogs included. We hosted grill-outs and bonfires and took our weekly Sunday trips to Target when the new ads came out. The two of us were even talking about trying for another child. Until…

I wasn’t happy anymore.

Marriage isn’t always all it’s portrayed to be. We were just going through the motions. I made grocery lists and made sure it included what I needed to pack my husband’s lunch each morning. I cleaned to make sure he could come home after work and just relax. I took our daughter to daycare, made sure she was bathed each night and tucked safely in bed. I scheduled doctor visits, vet checkups, playdates. But what I didn’t fit in my calendar was time to be me; more than a mom, more than a wife. 

I had lost myself, and somewhere in the midst of that, I had lost my marriage.

We weren’t a team; we weren’t even partners on the same team anymore. It wasn’t even the big blowing-up at each other fights; those had ended months before. It was more than just a lack of communication. It was a total disconnect. 

I love being a mom, and I love my daughter more than I can eloquently express. But I also love all of the things that make me who I am, and I am done feeling guilty for wanting to be more than just a mom.

So it ended, my seemingly perfect life, my put-together family. An outsider might say I hit rock bottom, with a home that’s no longer mine, a divorce in the making, a daughter learning that her parents are no longer together.

But I was far from rock bottom. I was free.

It was time to invest in myself.

I made my health a priority again. I found a gym that I actually enjoyed going to. And while the benefits of losing weight and feeling more energetic were obviously welcomed, my mental health began to improve too.

I took up old hobbies and interests; things I now know I never had to give up in the first place. I joined a slow-pitch softball league and benefited from light-hearted adult interaction. My hope for becoming a Big for Big Brothers Big Sisters became a reality when I finally volunteered and found my match. I even started writing for this very mom’s blog, which gave my mind an outlet for my love of writing. 

I gained my confidence back.

Not just in how I felt about how I looked. I was truly confident in myself and who I was again. I didn’t second-guess my decisions or stop to think I wasn’t good enough. With my head held high; I knew that I was capable.

I started fresh.

With that, I made the decision to continue bettering myself. So I changed my career, which included a move to be closer to my new job. 

I became a better mom.

While it might sound silly; through the process of restoring myself back to me, I was a better mom. With less stress and weight on my shoulders, I was able to breathe and just live in each moment with my daughter. Be both physically and mentally present with her. 

I can see why it may be hard to understand for some, but I am certain this path I took for myself is one my daughter can learn from. It is okay to want more. It is okay to want to be a good wife and an even greater mom, while yet being an amazing you. I want her to know the importance of staying true to yourself, believing in your worth, and the courage to never stop making yourself a priority. 

So I am more than just a mom.

It may have taken me a while to come to terms with it, but that’s okay. I get to enjoy being a mom, but I also now get to guilt-free enjoy being me too.


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Carly Hoeppner
Carly is a single mom of a spunky, independent, and sassy 3 year old. Her days usually start with a cup, or two or three, of coffee, and end with a glass of red wine. During the day she works with individuals with intellectual and physical disabilities; a truly rewarding job that she has the utmost passion for. At night you'll find her building magna tile towers, splashing with dinosaurs in the bathtub, reading countless bedtime stories, and performing her superhero powers of warding off the boogey man! After "just one more bedtime story mommy" you can find her lost in a new book, jotting down her thoughts of the day, or binge watching her latest Netflix obsession!

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