Before you have kids, you swear that you won't let becoming a parent change you. Hip and cool will be the words that everyone uses to describe you. You'll lose all your pregnancy weight right away and no one will even be able to tell that you have a kid. Late nights won't leave you tired. A shower will be had, hair and makeup done everyday - you'll still be smokin'.
Don't worry, I'm not going to tell you that you are condemned to a lifetime of frumpiness. Hot moms exist and you can be one, just not all of the time.
My kids have changed my life in every way possible, but it took me quite some time to see how much. When you lose (or gain) a lot of weight, you don't really see how drastic the change is until someone you haven't seen in a long time reacts to your new look. Stay with me, I'm almost to my point.
I was on the phone with one of my close, non-parent friends. She lives far away and we don't get to talk very often. We were talking about the possibility of taking a trip together with a few of our other girlfriends and she said, "You won't have the kids, so you can be like the Old Laura for a few days."
Have I changed that much? Does she think I am lame and boring now that I am a mom? Other similare questions along that line swam into my head and stayed there for days.
It helps to know that I was in full hormone overdrive when she said this, but the sentiment still stings a bit. I even went so far as to ask my dad if he thought I had changed and he told me that he thought I was a completely different person. This did not help to calm my fears that I had become some kind of Loser Mommy Pod Person.
Time, as usual, brings perspective. Of course becoming a mother would change me and it isn't a bad thing. Do my friends see me differently now? Yes. Does that suck? Well, sometimes it does. I have a lot of non-parent friends and being a mother makes you "older" than everyone else. You are automatically passed by for party invites because it is assumed that you can't get a babysitter. Late nights wouldn't be an option because of those early mornings anyway. On the other hand, the perks are way better. I get baby kisses, tickly giggles and smiles that could light the world. I am the infallible, unstoppable Mommy.
Old Laura isn't entirely gone. There are pictures of her around the house. I have some great memories of her. If I tried to conjure her for a night or two while I am away from the kids, she might make a cameo, but it would be a mere shadow of her. New Laura is here to stay. While not all of my friends will have kids down the road, they will all have an Old Me someday. I think parents just get them sooner.