What Nobody Tells You About Motherhood Before You Have Children…

Nope. Not a once did anybody ever mention to me that there’d be days when I wouldn’t like being a mom. Or that I wouldn’t necessarily like my child…..I would always love him, but I wouldn’t always like him. Or that I would be so past the point of being able to deal with a two year old that I would lock myself in the bathroom just to get away. Or that I’d understand why some species eat their young. Or that I’d have to be “on” all the time….sometimes I feel like the character Bert in Mary Poppins that has the drum/cymbals/horn contraption that he plays in the park. Nope. Nobody told me any of that.

I was a manager for several years and oversaw other managers as well as general employees. I hired and fired people. I helped settle their problems and disputes. I actually trained people how to do “important stuff”, but I can’t get my two year old to pick up after himself or use the big boy potty. I dealt with relatively intelligent and easy-to-deal-with people for the most part, as well as a handful of real idiots. I disciplined people that acted the way two year olds act: they wouldn’t share, they fought with each other, they cried when they didn’t get their way, they could not understand basic concepts and instructions, they acted as if the world revolved around them, and if they did something wrong it was always somebody else’s fault. But the difference between all of them and a two year old is that the employees could be (somewhat) reasoned with, they listened (sometimes), and were held accountable for their actions (they understood that if they did X, Y would be the consequence).

A two year old doesn’t understand any of those things, nor do they care. It’s their way or the highway. Tantrums don’t occur once in a great while, they occur daily – sometimes hourly. I never, ever thought I’d lose 98% of the arguments that I had with a two year old. I also never knew I’d give in so easy to unrealistic demands or after I’d said “NO” 100 times! Or that I’d occasionally think about drop kicking him across the street (as my friend Reyna told me she felt when her sons were little). Or stuffing him down a drain pipe (as my friend Tonya wrote in her blog). I also never considered that a two year old may still not sleep through the night. Or that he would whine incessantly. Or not be the angel I fantasized (fantasy is right!) about when I was pregnant. That I would yell and scream at him like a complete maniac, even though I would never in a million years do that to anybody else.

Our two year old is often referred to as “Little Caesar” or “Little Hitler” because that is how he acts. He wants things….now. He doesn’t care or want to hear my excuses of why I cannot deliver whatever it is he wants. He is unreasonable, moody, will not compromise, and does not take no for an answer, although he freely uses no as an answer to the majority of my requests.

And here is what I found out today….this is 100% normal! And it will probably get worse before it gets better! And that all of the feelings I feel are also normal! How weird is that??! Why does anybody have another child after experiencing life with a two year old??

Because of hearing “I love you Mommy”, watching them sleep, watching them learn to do something new, watching them dance, watching them laugh, making them laugh, getting hugs and wet kisses, seeing the pride in their eyes when they make you a picture, being the first person they run to when they get hurt, unconditional love, and learning that you’re stronger than you think you are because every day you get up and do it all again.

Being a mom is no joke! It is not for the faint of heart! Being a mom is exciting, scary, exhausting, amazing, and can make you feel like a success (and a failure) sometimes within the span of an hour! And even though I complain about it several times a day, I would never change it for the world. But I can still look forward to getting past the terrible twos and threes, right? Some crazy woman told me today that someday I’d look back and miss it…yeah, right. And I still have two more to go after this one….two girls that “they” (who are “they” anyways?) say are a lot harder than boys….aaaahhhh!!!


  1. I knew that "stuffing my kid down a drain pipe" would come back to haunt me. :) We moms need to stick together, as we are all in it together. It is hard work and I only have one so far. Deep breaths, lots of wine (or as my friend Coreen calls it, mommy juice) and a little "me" time every so often are what get me through! Not to mention the smiles, giggles and joy on my son's face whenever I enter the room or do something he approves of. :) Hang in there.
  2. Nat, this made me cry! So well written and oh so true! Being a mom is the hardest, most thankless, but most rewarding thing we'll ever do.

    But it's good to know we're not alone sometimes.
  3. Heather says:
    There is something about this job that makes a sane woman choose to do it again even when she knows what ugly monster is coming her way. I have Ethan's 3 year old "perfect" girlfriend (perfect monster) at my house making me very afraid for what will come when she is a teenager. I should have known better than name her Scarlett because she is living up to her name with a quick hot temper and drama at every turn!
    Even with all the trying days I have had with each of my children I still would choose to do it over without a second thought. You are doing a great job and the most important job there is even though it makes you cry and pull your hair out at times! :)
  4. WeeMasonMan's Mom says:
    I shouldn't have read this. I'm afraid, so very afraid.
  5. Ah, I believe every word of this. I can see the unreasonableness rearing it's ugly head already.
  6. Big Mama Cass says:
    OMG that was SUCH AN AWESOME POST!!!!! Love it!!! I don't even know what to say except.. friggin brilliant! Sursly.


    Thanks for playing along.
  7. Christy says:
    Girls aren't harder then boys. That is a lie. My daughter is way more calm than my son. Almost everyone I know with girls, have calm little ladies. So take heart, your girls might be easier!
  8. I am so impressed with this post Natalie... and it's absolutely not surprising to me at all how successful you've become since it. Your honesty speaks to all of us!! THANK you for linking up with us!! Jamie recently posted..thank you mrs. thornburgMy Profile
  9. You nailed it! And I don't think there's a mom out there who'd disagree with one word you wrote. In fact, I'm pretty sure, like me, they're all saying "Amen, sister!!" Thanks so much for linking up with us for Ghosts of Blogging Past. Sorry I'm such a loser and just now getting by here. With going out of town for nearly 2 weeks, I fell a bit behind. Mommy2¢ recently posted..Knock... Knock... No one's home!My Profile
  10. LOVE THIS! I wrote a similar piece earlier this year and so wish there were more honesty out there about the dark side of parenthood. Keep sharing and spreading the news: It's not like it looks in Hollywood. Those parents have a whole staff to help. Here's a link to my piece, What if You Hate Being a Mom? http://www.mommywise.com/1/post/2012/03/what-if-you-hate-being-a-mom.html


  1. [...] written the second week I started blogging…that’s close enough, right?! So check out What Nobody Tells You About Motherhood, a post I wrote about how hard being a mom really is that I think a lot of moms can relate [...]