“You did this to yourself”.
The words echoed painfully in my ears as they slowly entered my system.
I was just sitting, taking a breath after work before I’d head home and start my everyday routine as a mom of a 3 year old.
I didn’t ask for comments, for judgement, and least of all blame.
Have I felt regret for becoming a mom at 21 during these past 4 years, ever since I found out I was pregnant? Yes. Cannot deny that.
When friends ask me out and I can’t find a baby sitter, when I can’t find a single moment of peace, when my college peers meet up spontaneously on the other side of the city, when most nice things I own are ruined and when keeping the house in some sort of an order is the most impossible task in my existence: Yes, in those moments, I have a tiny voice in my head that squeaks: “You’re only 24 and you’re stuck.”
However, can I imagine a single moment of my life anymore without Yunus. No, I cannot. I absolutely can’t.
I realize the absolute certainty of the aforementioned fact when I finally get that moment of peace or that long longed for outing with my friends. I see him everywhere. I look at the world through his eyes.
“Yunus would have loved this dessert.”
“He would have said something funny about this situation.”
“He would have pointed at that Audi and said wooooow with his cute voice”.
Most importantly, I would feel empty.
The night I decided to move his bed into his own room and he actually slept there the whole night, I kept waking up and going to the room to check on him. I secretly wished that I’d fail in training him to sleep in his bed.
Does this mean that my life is easy? Well, needless to even say it isn’t. I have responsibilities that most of the people my age will not see in another (on average) 5 years.
“You did this to yourself.”
Yes, in a way I did, and no matter how much I “miss” out on, or how tired I am most of the time, I wouldn’t change a thing.
Knowing what I know now about motherhood, about being everything to Yunus, I’d choose it all over again.
However, I don’t wish that my experience affects or influences anyone’s decision about the timing of starting a family. I’m simply talking about what I made out of my own situation.
Next time you see a young mother, presumably or obviously exhausted, taking a minute before heading home, it might be a better choice to opt for one of the following, less painful comments:
“You’ve got this.”
“Hey good luck with everything.”
“Say hi to your little boy/girl.”
“Do you need anything?” (Obviously we’ll say no but we’ll appreciate the offer.)
Or for God’s sake just give a supporting smile or a thumbs up… There’s absolutely no need to make her feel like her decision and/or reality of getting pregnant at a relatively young age was somehow an avoidable nuisance that she should carry the “blame” for and any complaints or remarks that she ever has of her life as a mom are out of place.
I’m done ranting. Thank you. Bye.
“You did this to yourself”.