After participating in Lent this year, my challenge became so normal, I forgot Lent was over. I learned so much of myself as a mother, a wife, and most importantly who I really am as a person even when those titles aren’t involved. I didn't take daily outfit pics, but I wish I took the extra minutes to do so! These were my favorites, mostly because Miko is more adorable in them than my actual outfit.
My goal was to get dressed every day for the 40 days. It wasn't just about putting on a dress, it represents fighting postpartum and it helped me feel better generally. I think a hot shower will anyone feel better. I got a couple readers who were critical of the project- that I was ungrateful for finally being a mom, and I was wasn’t appreciative of what I did have. Listen, I am appreciative and I am grateful and for others to assume otherwise was funny, offensive, mostly hurtful. I think about what I’ve lost every day in order to get what I have now, and if I want to do it in a pretty dress and good hair, that is okay with me.
Within the first week, I discovered where my priorities where- If I had 1 hour to myself, I had to figure out what was most important- getting dressed, working out, meal planning, cleaning, or emails, social media, etc. I stuck to my plan but it was hard. I did my hair when I so badly wanted to take a moment and read. I shaved my legs every day when all I wanted to do was spend those extra 15 minutes in bed instead of a shower.
It sounds vain- choosing to get dressed over small comforts like extra sleep and reading. I could either enjoy these things for a few minutes in the day but have the rest of the day with tangles and spit up in my hair, not do my laundry with questionable stains, or regret my extra few minutes alone I didn’t spend on a hydrating mask every time I looked in the mirror.
By the end of it, it became a habit. Taking care of myself didn’t just mean a bath, manicure, those little luxuries I would give myself. I noticed I was in a better mood because I felt better about myself. It wasn’t so much how I looked, but it was just a grooming process, the normalcy of it.
Beauty is a ritual, getting ready, putting on my makeup, that is a daily ritual before Miko. What I wanted from this was normalcy. I wanted to feel like me again. Even if I had spit up all over me, or Miko pulling my freshly curled hair out, at least that was part of me, if that makes sense. Ultimately, I didn’t want to look for faith in the tube of lipstick or curling iron. I wanted to find God in the new normal.
Now? I didn’t expect the same dramatic before and after, but I did find a new normal. Discovering motherhood is in the small things- like how Miko will use my hair as a blanket to cover herself when she falls asleep on me, or use it as a game for “peekaboo”. How my wardrobe revolves around Miko- will it be easy to feed her in it? Can I wear a carrier comfortable? My life revolves around her and it’s the new normal I’ve always wanted. She’s the beauty I was looking for all along.