Kristen Carter - Letting go

I am excited to highlight this mama today for many reasons. Kristen has been a doula for many years in the Spokane community and she was the first person I contacted when I realized I needed a good childbirth class and a doula. I contacted her again after I had my daughter when I realized I wanted to pursue being a doula myself. And I contacted her a third time when I wanted to look into learning to teach childbirth classes.

I say all of this because she is a woman we can all learn so much from. She is a mama to four of her own lovely children and is in nursing school to become a midwife. Kristen doesn't shy away from being completely honest about her experience with motherhood - the really difficult, isolating and discouraging parts, along with the joys and beauties that come with it as well.

Please read her words below!

"Motherhood has meant being stretched to the very edges of my sanity, but usually coming back around to a deep place of love and surrender.

Motherhood has meant diving into the individual core of each of my children in a perpetual treasure hunt...what makes each of them feel motivated, loved, wounded, and lost...and how do I meet each one in meaningful spaces. One is open to share vulnerable thoughts and feelings laaaate into the night in bed with the lights off. Another will answer "how was your day?" with real sentences and detail, but only if located in the passenger seat of the car while moving. Another wants me to be brutally honest even if it is disappointing, rather than encourage false hope. And another, needs to be squeezed tightly when feeling out of control and flooded with sensory and emotional overload, even when body language is telling me to go away.

Motherhood has meant knowing why a mother bear protects her cubs and how even small threats to their well-being will make her go raving mad. Motherhood has meant feeling desperately alone and integrally connected to the motherhood community simultaneously. Motherhood has meant loving my body and appreciating how powerful it is, even when the mirror and scale frustrate me. Motherhood has meant absolutely delighting in these painfully irritating children, learning that you can fiercely love the same people that drive you crazy. Motherhood has meant letting go.

Motherhood has meant letting go of "shoulds" and expectations (and a clean house) and embracing a messy journey as these four little teachers guide me towards a better version of myself by pushing me into the unknown, the uncomfortable, and the uncontrolled...the places where my worst self has to face herself. Motherhood is a brutal and beautiful ride. Every. Single. Day. I wouldn't change it for a thing, except for those times when I would..."

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