Since having two kids, my brain is simply not the same as it used to be. There are definitely pros and cons to this truth. For example, I’m way better at multitasking now than I ever was in the past, but I also leave out about 40% of what I was trying to accomplish. It’s cool, though (luckily, I’m also more forgiving). But there is so much going on in my mom-brain on any given day that sometimes things get cramped and crazy in there. And not everything runs smoothly.
Here are 10 ways my brain is different since I had kids:
1. I’m extraordinarily forgetful. I can easily leave a bag of groceries (the only bag of groceries I just paid for) on the checkout counter and start walking home until the cashier chases me halfway down the street screaming, “Ma’am! Excuse me! Do you want your groceries?” I’ve also started calling my kids the wrong names (even though one is a baby boy and the other is a 5-year-old girl). I lose my train of thought mid-sentence and … wait, what was I saying?
2. I am more prone to anxiety. Having two human beings to care for and keep in good health is a lot harder than it looks. Especially since they seem to enjoy getting every flu, cold, and tummy bug known to man, pushing the boundaries of their frightening curiosities (the baby literally put a cat’s hairball in his mouth the other day and I was actually relieved because at first I thought it was poop), and trying to seriously injure themselves in the blink of an eye. If they’re not doing any of those things, then they’re screaming bloody murder for no good reason and tricking me into thinking something is horribly wrong anyway.
3. Which can easily turn into panic. “Is that a staircase with no gate? A black widow spider? Bill Cosby???”
4. I have a high tolerance for exhaustion. I survived an entire year on basically no sleep whatsoever. Pre-kids, I would’ve been calling out/canceling whatever commitments I had because, holy hell, who can function like that? Turns out, moms find a way. Sometimes you just have to, and while sleepless nights still suck, I always know I’ll make it through. No, it won’t be pretty, but luckily coffee and huge sunglasses have got your back.
5. And grossness. Almost nothing grosses me out anymore. Not green snot or poop. Not weird rashes or hair-clogged drains. I’ve seen it all, even though sometimes I really didn’t want to. Need a plumber, snot-sucker, butt-wiper? Call a mom. Just not me … I’m busy.
6. I’m constantly thinking of 87 things I should be doing other than what I’m actually doing. Take out trash. Put in laundry. Don’t forget to put the clean laundry in the dryer so it doesn’t get that gross, musty smell. Unload the dishwasher. Run around like a wild banshee looking for my grocery list. Give up and write a new grocery list. Don’t forget to turn off the TV so the kids don’t turn into zombies. Except … maybe I could just get a little more done first …
7. I’m always 14 steps ahead of the game. Catching flying vomit. Grabbing cups of water before they get dumped all over the floor. Grabbing the baby by his onesie before he tumbles down the stairs or smashes his finger in the door (again). Basically, anticipating his every move like a jaguar. Only I’m not trying to eat him. I’m trying to save him from himself.
8. I have a hard time “relaxing” without a little somethin’ somethin’ to help. Wine, people. I’m talking about wine.
9. I also have a hard time waking up without coffee. Or feet in my face. But I prefer the coffee.
10. My inner emotions are tremendously linked to what’s going on with my kids. I could be having the best day ever on a personal level, until one of my kids starts melting down. On the plus side, even if everything in my life is going in the crapper, sometimes all it takes is two happy, easygoing kids to make me smile. Now, guess which happens more often.