10 Ways a Mother Thinks Differently

Friday, February 13, 2015

Being a younger mom, I'm constantly reminded of how motherhood changes you, as I watch some of my very dear friends live their single lives right out of college. (For this purpose- let's say single is "without children" regardless of relationship status.) In fact, one of my very good friends at work and I giggle about how different her evenings look than mine all the time.

This got me thinking about how differently my mind works than some of my single girlfriends. Becoming a mom so young, I don't really know what my brain would be like any other way (permeant mommy brain fog, lovely), but I visit with my girlfriends enough to know how different our mind sets are. Neither is right or wrong, just very different, in a humorous way! Motherhood changes you, and here are 10 ways as a mom, we think differently than our single friends.

1. A productive day looks differently

The single GF:  A productive day is, up by 9:30, a cup of coffee...or 2, a load of laundry, a 2 hour work out, and quick lunch with the bestie. Maybe a quick trip to the mall to grab a top for tonight, caught up on last nights episode of Scandle, and then out with the beau. 

The Mom: A productive day is up at 7:00 am, baby fed, changed, pooped, spit up, and re dressed all by 8:30am. Guzzling coffee by the thermos load, shuffling two kids to the dr. by 9:15, returning husbands Christmas gift that was a size too small (secretly keeping the cash instead of exchange *shhh, he'll never know), running by academy for soccer socks for this afternoons game, a stop at SAMS Club for some formula, and lunch done by 12pm. Quick pit stop for the 4 year old's soccer game, target stop for dinner food, swing through the car wash (get interior vaccumed if I'm feeling super productive), back home, make dinner, simutaniously doing 4 loads of laundry, play with kids, bath time for 2 kids, bedtime routines, "oh hey, husband, I know you have been helping all day, but have we even spoken? Love you!", shower myself, clean house, catch up on a half episode of the Greys Anatomy from 2 weeks ago at 11pm before falling asleep on the couch , then waking up and making bottles for the night, followed by falling, quite literally, into bed. Baby awake for a bottle at 3am (wait is that considered this day or tomorrow?) Now THATS a productive day! 

2. We think of money differently

The single GF:

An expensive pair of jeans: $250.00
An expensive meal: $40.00
An expensive bar tab: $80.00
Most expensive monthly payment: $1200.00 for that loft apartment in the chic part of town, above all the night life.

The Mom:

An expensive pair of jeans: $80.00
An expensive meal: $25.00
An expensive bar tab: what's a bar tab? 
Most expensive monthly payment: $1450.00 for child care (Monday-Friday, where we still send both of their food too!)

3. We think of style differently

the single GF: going to a cookout in a cute sundress that you have to wear a strapless bra for, with some trendy wedges, that cute necklace you bought last week, and those dangly, designer earrings are cute to boot! 

The Mom: a flowy shirt that disguises the spare tire your packing, that one pair of jeans that actually fit without having to pull them up everytime you bend down to tie a shoe, attempt - at - trendy flats, stud earrings so little mister can't rip them out, "do I even have my wedding ring on?", ready to go!

4. Our thoughts on a good Pandora station differs

The single GF: Train, One Republic, Ed Sheeran, Rhianna, Ellie Goulding, Hozier, Maroon 5, etc.

The Mom: disney songs, Princess radio, lullaby radio, Taylor Swift *edited*, toddler radio, kids bop 123847, etc.

5. We think of a long night a little differently

The single GF: started at 9pm with dinner and drinks at that Mexican resturante and bar, ended 5 bars down, 6 drinks in, with full on wobble, followed by a cab ride home at 2:30am, a few miserable moments on the bathroom floor, then waking up at 11 am after a LONG night.

The Mom: started at 9pm when your toddler was still up asking for water, her hair pulled up, to use the bathroom, one more kiss, her eye mask, that one stuffed animal, and an extra story. Continued with a baby having a bad dream, needing to be rocked for 15 minutes, then a bottle at 3 am, followed by the 4 year old with an upset tummy who feels like she's going to... Woop... A miserable half hour in the bathtub to clean her up, new sheets on the bed, back she goes. Waking at 7:30 am to start all over after a LONG night. Am I even awake? 

6. Our thoughts on a peaceful time to ourselves differ:

The single GF: a stop by Starbucks on her way to an hour long massage, then a mani/pedi on the way home. Ahhh! Feeling so refreshed!

The Mom: Peeing and a shower without a single family member present. SCORE!!!

7. Thoughts on "the best evening ever"

The single GF: one where she arrives home to a handsome hunk, with dinner plated next to a bottle of wine, by the fireplace, while a fire crackles, and she tells him all about her day as he stares totally engaged in her eyes. 

The Mom: one where no on utters the words, "what's for dinner?" the second we walk in the door.

8. We think of multi tasking differently

The single GF: texting, while getting ready, while watching Good Morning America, while drinking coffee

The Mom: texting, while cooking dinner, while entertaining the baby via 'Jesus loves me', while listening to the 4 year old's latest Preschool woahs, while doing laundry, while signing up for your turn on the snack service website for soccer. Bad A$$. 

9. Our thoughts on what a cleaning out the car is probably differ too

The single GF: has enough hands to carry all the trash in after each drive, and time to try on her new clothes after each shopping trip. She has gotten a car wash every week, and takes the time to wipe off her muddy boots on rainy days. 

The Mom: is busy carrying a diaper bag, a purse, a backpack, a baby carrier, and a little hand... Too busy in fact to get any of the trash that has not only accumulated from her in the front seat but also from the midgets in the back who think of the floor as their personal trash can, collecting anything they have no purpose for including crumbs, gum, food, toys, tags, packaging, etc.  She forgets she even bought anything during the chaos know as "getting in the door", leaving her shopping bags behind... For weeks sometimes. It was raining this morning, so she leaves lbs. of mud on the floor mats, praising herself for actually brining in all the shoes that the midgets remove every damn time they are in the car!

10. Our thoughts on true love HAVE to differ!

The single GF: imagines true love to come in the form of romance. Being romanced by a man who adores her, lavishes her in love and gifts, has a cheerful attitude and giving heart. One who still believes in chivalry. One who knows how to have fun, and make her laugh. True love is what she seeks, just like us all.

The Mom: knows what form true love comes in. It comes from a man who in the mist of this very imperfect life, still tells her she's beautiful, even post baby body and all. It comes from a love that doesn't have to be spoken about to know it exisits in the form of the partnership that is parenting. It comes from little tounges that think it's funny to lick you when you try to kiss them. It comes from Saturday mornings when you wake up with all 4 family members and 2 pets... All in one bed. It's the homemade coloring page "just for you".
It's the "your the best mom Evers" and the "I never want to move away when I grow ups". The Mom knows the true love  we all search for.

Like I said, comparing life without children to a life with can be quite an ironic and funny thing. At times, it appears that the single GF has the world at her fingertips, but until you know the life of motherhood, you never really understand anything at all. You don't appreciate things the same way, and you don't know love the same way. There are days I wish I was the single GF, but there isn't a night that I don't lay my head down, in the peace of the night, that I don't thank God for calling me to this insane life of the Mom.


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