I was cruising along yesterday doing really well. We were on time. I had my coffee. My daughter had her muffin and we would arrive at school by 8:30. I was dressed well for work. I had heels on, earrings in and I remembered my wedding ring. The sun was shining, a perfect sing-a-long song was on the radio and there was very little traffic. I wanted to give myself a high-five for a successful morning.
Then as I turned the wheel of my car, my arm brushed across my chest and I realized something felt different. There was no padding, there was no support. I felt boob.
I had forgotten to put on a normal bra. Instead I was wearing a cotton, overnight, nursing bra. No underwire, no padding – just some elastic and a thin layer of cotton between my boobs and the outside world. You really shouldn’t even consider these things a bra. If anything they are more of a holder for breast pads so there is something to soak up leaky milk.
How could I have forgotten a bra?!?! I immediately blamed it on my mommy brain.
You know it well too, I’m sure. That forgetfulness that pops up at the most inconvenient times to make you look or feel like an idiot. That’s it. That’s mommy brain in full force, wreaking havoc on your sense of sanity.
In the years that I have been a mother, I had worn two different shoes in public, often wondered where I had put my phone (usually I found it in my hand), put my keys in the refrigerator and certainly forgot to pack a snack a time or two (or 10) for the kids.
It only makes me feel slightly better that mommy brain is a real thing. It has actually been studied and things like sleep deprivation (check), stress (check) and multitasking (check) have been found to heighten symptoms. I knew that I had lost my mind a bit since becoming a mother, but had my mommy brain really gotten so bad that I couldn’t even remember to put on a bra?
Of all the moments I have had some sort of issue with mommy brain, this may have been one of the most awkward. I had on a blouse and a button down sweater that was really more for outfit coordination than covering up any indication that I might be a bit chilly. I didn’t have time to stop before work to buy an actual bra and who really knows my actual size now anyways.
As moms run from school to work to activity(ies) and back again, I know we all have our moments. We might wear yoga pants to work (Guilty, but I swear they look like work pants.), forget to finish putting on make-up (Guilty), forget to eat (This one doesn’t apply to me.) or stop mid-sentence because we can’t remember our point (Guilty.). But do other moms experience this at this level of possible public embarrassment or am I really the only one who can’t keep it together enough to even get properly dressed?
I decided I would make the best of it. I would power through and hope no one looked at me. After all, my boobs are not touching my belly button. They didn’t look saggy and we have only been breastfeeding once at night still so I didn’t think I would have to worry about leakage. Maybe no one would notice?
We walked into school and the director said to me, “Oh! I like your blouse!”
I couldn’t help but smile. My blouse was nice. It was white (yep) with black polka dots. It’s one of my favorites and I paired it with a red cardigan so the shirt would specifically pop. At least that was the only thing popping and she couldn’t tell that I was basically flapping in the wind.
Throughout the day I made an effort to cover myself with my arms when it seemed chilly. It was a bit awkward because my boobs are not that low yet so my arms were higher than they really needed to be. I probably looked like a weirdo. If anything, my odd stance was drawing more attention to myself.
But guess what? I made it through my day and I’m pretty sure no one noticed. Sure maybe they were just being nice, but maybe people don’t really spend their entire days looking at my boobs? After all, they are not as eye catching as they once were and my shirt was not low cut (Thank you, Lord!).
Last night, as I was snuggling my daughter to sleep still wearing the same bra, I decided that mommy brain isn’t such a bad thing. Let’s face it, there is only so much room in your head to juggle all the thoughts you are having about life. And when you are sleep deprived and running on caffeine, you are bound to forget a thing or two every now and then. That’s ok. That’s even normal according to the experts.
I won’t be burning my bra anytime soon, but I decided that I was lucky to have mommy brain. I wanted to be a mother for so long, so badly, that if forgetfulness was the price I had to pay for my kids’ sweet smiles, it was a very, small price.
Most of the things we forget won’t be the end of the world. They will just irritate us temporarily until we fail to recall what we were forgetting anyways.
Now excuse me. I have to go find my phone.