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It's My Baby and I'll Cry If I Want to: 10 Weird Things That Make Me Cry Now that Im a Mom

Crying woman

I'm a mom; pass the Kleenex

Blame it on the hormones all you want. But I’m 9 months postpartum, most of the pregnancy hormones have long since skipped town, yet here I am on a semi-regular basis, still weeping. See also: sobbing. Blubbering. Wailing.

Not because I’m sad. Or not always, anyway. It’s just that I have this precious, little baby and when I see the world through her eyes, or I think of her through the world’s eyes, I tend to get a bit teary. Or at lot. Depending on what it is.

The things that set me off are a bit stranger than I ever imagined. Here are the 10 biggest triggers that make me cry just because I’m a mom:


  • When I listen to commencement speeches 1 of 10
    When I listen to commencement speeches
    There are funny graduation speakers, poignant ones and boring ones. The one thing they have in common? They all make me bawl. Not because of anything they're necessarily saying. But because I watch them knowing someday it'll be my baby wearing that cap and gown, sitting on a metal folding chair listening to someone of note preach clichés for 7 minutes too long while I'm craning my neck to get a good look at my daughter walk across the stage and receive her diploma.
    We might be nearly two decades away from her leaving home for college, and even longer until she graduates college, but it's as if the emotional tsunami hits in advance — for practice, maybe? — whenever I see or read about one of those damn 5-hanky speeches.
  • When I watch Disney movies 2 of 10
    When I watch Disney movies
    It's not the Disney movies like Cinderella or Snow White that upset me. No, it's the ones like Bambi and Dumbo, where the mom gets killed off and leaves her baby to fend for himself without a mom. You want me to sob uncontrollably? Show me the scene in The Lion King when Simba's dad is killed trying to save him in a stampede and it's totally Simba's fault.
    (Yes, it's Simba's dad, not his mom, who dies. But I have this uncanny ability to make anything about me.)
  • When she’s fallen and can’t get up 3 of 10
    When she's fallen and can't get up
    She doesn't cry when she falls over from her sitting position. But I do. Because she doesn't. There's something ever so pathetic and undignified about how she'll just lie there without complaining. It makes me think I just need to be there for her every second. And, of course, I can't. Cue the waterworks and pass the Kleenex.
  • When I see that Johnson’s Baby commercial 4 of 10
    When I see that Johnson's Baby commercial
    That one where the baby is all like, "I just wanted to tell you're doing a good job, Mom." Yeah, that one. Just shoot me now. Really, just end it. It wrecks me. Can you imagine feeling like you might just be doing a good job and your baby actually agrees? Because that commercial gives me some hope. And, you know, fits of uncontrollable sobs.
  • When my girls play with each other 5 of 10
    When my girls play with each other
    My husband and I struggled with the decision to have a second child together. Money, space and time were all issues. But ultimately — among other reasons — we really wanted our older daughter to have a companion close to her age who would hold her hand unconditionally through life. Who knows if they'll be BFF or end up emotionally distant, but when I see my younger daughter's face light up these days when her big sister walks in the room, and when my older daughter tries to brush the baby's hair with a Lego (and then doesn't try to kill her immediately after), it pretty much destroys me. In a good, albeit bizarrely theatrical, snot-running-down-my-face, mascara-smearing-down-my-cheeks kind of way.
    Photo credit: Meredith Carroll
  • When she laughs 6 of 10
    When she laughs
    A baby's laughter is supposed to be the sweetest thing in the world, right? Except her laugh is so sweet it makes me blubber. It's everything: The way her face scrunches up when she finds something amusing enough to make a noise, the actual pitch of her laughter, the way she'll grab her toes and throw the rest of her body into a surrender pose because it's just that funny. It kills me. It's painstaking innocence and life all wrapped into a chubby little baby, and it's enough to make me break down and shatter into tiny, little pieces.
  • When I see babies in the news 7 of 10
    When I see babies in the news
    It's rare that you see an uplifting story about babies on the news. Like, the stories are never about how all these cute babies organized a giggle flash mob or a sit-in to protest the baby food companies sneaking pureed vegetables in with the fruit or something. No, mostly what you see are stories of horrible parents doing God-awful things to their precious babies, or how innocent, sweet little babies are afflicted with terrible illnesses.
    No matter where it happens, who they are or what it is, if it's happening to a baby and it's not good, I'll be over here — sobbing.
  • When I leave her 8 of 10
    When I leave her
    I'm not a mom who can never leave her baby. I look forward to getting out as often as I can with my girlfriends or my husband. But I'm still nursing my baby and she doesn't take a bottle, so I'm with her pretty much all the time unless she's asleep. I would never leave her somewhere or with someone I didn't trust, but that doesn't stop me from crying a few tears of silent panic imagining the worst-case scenarios right before a new babysitter knocks on the door, or when I entrust someone else to adhere to her schedule when I have something else pressing.
  • When she claps her hands 9 of 10
    When she claps her hands
    My daughter loves to clap her hands. Not only does it make a fun noise (hey, she's only 9 months old), but she's just so proud of herself. It's not like she's crawling or walking, but in her own developmental way, she's asserting her independence in that she's figured out a way to entertain herself.
    I'm proud of her, too, but it breaks my heart because it's the first step in a lifelong journey of moving away from me. I kind of liked it better when she needed me to clap her hands. Or at least it made me weep a little less dramatically when I still had to do it for her.
  • When I look at this photo 10 of 10
    When I look at this photo
    The moment she was pulled from my belly during my C-section and placed next to me for this photo, I felt empty and full all at once. There was finally a face to the creature who'd been growing inside of me for 39 weeks, but at the same time I could no longer protect her around the clock (including a few moments after this photo was taken and she was whisked off to be cleaned, weighed and measured). She was the final piece to my heart's puzzle, and total confirmation that I'll never voluntarily rest easy again just so I can be on my toes in case she needs me.
    Photo credit: Meredith Carroll

Photo credits: iStock

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