Before We Were Mamas

by The Editor

I put out a challenge to Mom Group over the weekend, to post a photo of ourselves in our “maiden phases” (i.e. before we became mothers), and to write a little blurb about what that time in our lives meant to us. The results were uh-mazing. We spend so much time on Instagram, looking at other “Mom Feeds”, and rarely do we get glimpses of one another from the phases of our lives that do not have to do with this all-encompassing deal of Motherhood.

The time before we become mothers is special. We have the freedom to make our days our own, to spend time with friends and nurture those relationships, to focus on our own hobbies and interests, and yes, to fall in love. One Mom Group member sent me a photograph that her partner had taken of her during a romantic trip to Paris, when they had had all the time in the world to simply, “be”. Another mama sent a photo of herself taking a hike in Hawaii. Another tagged herself in a photo of her in a boat, next to quite a big catch! Perhaps an old hobby? One mama sent me a video of her doing a sexy, exotic belly dance.

Wistful — a bit, maybe. But looking to the past and remembering a different phase or part of ourselves that meant a lot to us does’t mean we regret where we are now. It all lead to this place. It is a good place. We are good people, and good mothers because of all those late, late nights with friends, aimless mornings, crazy parties, experiments with different identities, past careers, failed relationships. We are lucky. We have lived full lives. We continue to live full lives.

Some quotes from the challenge:

“Sometimes I remember all the things I did, and think, “I’d like to know that person.” — Momtown NYC

“I was so fearless and bold. I just went for things, without second-guessing.” — S.

“Before I was a mom, I had time to be carefree, and pole!” — T.

“Make whatever assumptions you’d like and know that you are most likely correct.” (Re: a photo she posted of herself from way back.) — My Doula Melaney

“Before I was a mom, I used to walk my pups with wine.”

Thank you to all who contributed to the #nsfmgtbchallenge!