I’m Hayley Berlingeri, Adelaide born and bred, mamma of three, and here I am just finding my way (AKA fumbling!!) through my days with my little ones, trying to be the best version of me that I possibly can be (which more often than not, results in me flopped out on the sofa at 10:34pm eating an entire packet of Mint Slice bickies, and thanking God that tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it!)
Before the babes came in to being, I poured my heart into my career as a Junior Primary teacher and JP Coordinating Principal, I travelled the world, near and far, and I solidly slept. But since then have given every waking minute to motherhood and all its mess, mayhem and marvel. Oh, and I love to share our stories in squares on our instapage!
“Have you ever felt like you lost yourself in motherhood?”
Mel, Clarence Gardens
“No one ever mentioned it. In nine whole months, not one person said ‘you’re about to meet someone entirely new. And it’s not your baby, it’s going to be you.” @fourthtrimestercollective
Insert ugly crying face here!!! ??? I’m not sure that I’ve ever felt like I lost myself in motherhood, but more like I found myself. I found parts of myself that I never knew existed. And I met new versions of me that were never there before.
In those very first days, I felt so strong for what I had just done- I had squeezed a fully formed human out of my body! I never knew I had this super-human strength within me. But, on the flip side, before too long, I felt so, so weak for all that I didn’t know. And these newly found feelings of weakness made me scared. And for the first time in my life, I felt anxious. I had never met Anxious Hayley before. I didn’t know who she was. At all. And I didn’t like her. At all. She was nervy. She was shaky on the inside. She was second guessing EVERYTHING. She would wake up in the morning, consumed by anxiety. And she would go to sleep at night under a blanket of dread. I remember thinking ‘WHO AM I????!!??! THIS IS NOT ME!!!! I was almost scared of myself, and the way I was feeling. One minute I felt empowered by the fact that I was actually managing to keep this little person alive, day after day. But then that was hugely overshadowed by feelings of sheer and utter exhaustion, self doubt, and a grieving for my old life. And this new up-and-down version of myself has me confused and wondering ‘WHERE THE HELL AM I??!!!’ Where is Confident, Even Keel, Self Assured Hayley???!!!!!
But with time comes learning. And with learning comes knowledge. And, as they say, knowledge is power. Ever so slowly, the power of motherhood grew stronger inside me, as I began to trust myself. I realised that my anxiety was actually quite normal, considering that I had just been thrown into a completely new job that I had no absolutely training for. And I wasn’t so scared of it any more. Until one day, I woke up and the anxiety was gone. And there I was. Confident, Even Keel, Self Assured Hayley was back. With a few new added features …like saggy-wet-sock boobs, and a squishy, flabby stomach. And a love for myself, for my baby, for the world, that I had never known before. And I knew that I had become exactly who I was always meant to be.
Love Hayley XOX
Got a question about life, motherhood or eating chocolate biscuits… I’ll give you an answer! @sweetlittlestory