I can’t wait to be a mom. I mean, I can wait, I’m not exactly at the right point in my life yet, but my heart already swells in my chest when I think about it. Family is so important to me, and as much as I love my current lifestyle, I can’t imagine any time in life being more fulfilling or happy than raising children with the person you love (I think runner-up is traveling the world with the person you love.) Sometimes I wonder how having children will affect parts of my life that I love so much, like traveling, dancing, and fashion. There’s an inherent selflessness that comes from being a parent, your focus is so much less on yourself and so much more on your children, and for the most part, I imagine you wouldn’t want it any other way. But you still have to be you, and take care of you, and foster the things you love about you, and that seems to be the balance that parents I know struggle with. It can’t be easy! In addition to the exhaustion and busyness and possible balancing of a career, I wonder if there is a worry or guilt that things you used to love are no longer “appropriate” because you’re a mother. Will I feel like I can’t wear certain outfits, or dance certain dances, or skinny dip in the ocean in a foreign country because that’s not something a “mom” should do, even when my kids aren’t with me?

I’m sure these will absolutely not be my biggest priorities, but I still really hope I don’t feel like I can’t do these things anymore. I feel like there is no one way to be a mom, no one-size-fits-all mold, and that while your priorities will naturally shift, of course, you should still feel free to be who you are. It’s not like just because you’re a mom, your personality, your sexuality, your passions, your dreams just disappear, either. People seem to be so judgmental, particularly of women and especially of moms, and I will never understand the need to bring other people down just because they don’t live or act like you. And like, sure, I’m not about to show up to a parent-teacher conference in a silky corseted mini dress, but not because I think it’s wrong, I just personally wouldn’t feel comfortable doing so. But for a date night out? I think as long as I feel confident in it, and it still expresses me, I’ll wear it. And if my style has naturally shifted and I only want to wear more sophisticated options, then I will. But I don’t think it should be determined by what is deemed “appropriate” for motherhood. I’d also argue it’s important for your kids to see you happy, taking care of yourself and who you are!

The top and jeans I wore in these photos made my friend say I looked like a “liberal mom taking her kids to a painting class,” which is why I was thinking about what it means to dress like a mom. I personally love this top, I bought it from Zara maybe 4 or 5 years ago and I think it’s simple and elegant, able to be dressed up or down. The white material is very breathable and the red leaf pattern brings a pop of my favorite color. The jeans are admittedly in the style known as “mom jeans,” but they’re super comfortable while also durable, making them great for days outside when they might get dirty.

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Naturally, this all brought “Mama Tried” as sung by The Grateful Dead to my head. This song always makes me think of driving out west, where you feel surprisingly in touch with that outlaw kind of mindset. Windows down, hair blowing, driving down an open arid road. Bliss!!

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That leaves only me to blame ’cause mama tried

Hopefully, your child never grows up to be an outlaw like the song suggests, but if so, at least you’ve got a great song to take solace in.

Listen to it here! “Mama Tried”-The Grateful Dead

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