Cherrell, on Love. Sling Diaries, Vol VII.

The Sling Diaries, Volume VII. A photo-documentary chronicling the art of baby wearing in the lives of families around the world. Over the course of six months, Sling Diarists will create their own Sling Diary though a series of diary entries interpreting a unique theme given to them each month.

Meet all of our Sling Diarists here.

ON LOVE

Letters to Freya: {Self} Love

It’s funny, but certain facets of love have changed for me since your arrival.

The love between your Papa and I has grown, but it’s different.

Better in some ways. 

Couch dates and early bedtime snuggles have taken the place of exploring good eats, and adventures through new towns.

Not to say these won’t return - I know they will.

I’ve gained a deeper understanding of raw and selfless love. It exists between your Papa and me, but not to the extent as it exists between us. 

Your heart and soul is so dependent on my own affection and care that at times it may feel as though our love goes one way.

Forever placing my hopes and desires second to yours without any expectations of reciprocation.

But you have your ways of reciprocating. 

To let me know you appreciate me.

I’ve read a lot from mothers who say how easy it is to lose your identity and self-love after having children.  Of course I never fully understood how possible and how quickly this could happen. 

Self-love.

Now, I see how this part of motherhood is tough.  Perhaps the most difficult.   

It’s the biggest thing that’s changed in my atmosphere of love. 

I give 100% of myself to you, and another 100% to your Papa, and leave nothing for myself.

The adrenaline high is wearing off.  And true exhaustion is settling in.   

Now seven months later, I realize I have to find the time. It’s important.

Show myself a little love.  Set aside time to be loved.

Re-energize.

For me, it’s easier said than done.  It takes effort to love yourself.  The flaws and all.

I have to learn how to rid the guilt I feel for wanting time for myself.  Even if it’s just an hour.

I’ll miss you, and I know you’ll miss me too.  I know you’re always in good hands.

But, it’s ok for me to step away.  I do have an identity aside from being your mother.

“It doesn’t mean I love you any less.”

This mantra. This is what I have to continually remind myself. 

These new challenges, mentally, physically, and emotionally, are humbling.

Self-love is the newest challenge I choose to overcome.

I know I may not feel so brave every day though.  Some days, even years, will be easier than others. 

There will be days filled with overwhelming amounts of stress, and I may lose the battle to your desires and needs.

But in these moments I’ll choose to remember who I am, and show myself the grace and love I deserve. 

I love you, I love myself, and I love the mother I’ve become. 

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