***I wrote this post when my daughter was four months old.


Dear Diary,


Oh, what a difference a year makes!  Before becoming a first time mom, I hosted a television show in the Cayman Islands.  I traveled to Columbia, Thailand, Panama, the Bahamas and everywhere in between for work and play.  Then I traded in the sun and the sand for the snow and a school and moved to Maryland to be closer to my long-term boyfriend.  I stepped out from being in front of a camera to being in front of a classroom.  I went back to school and became a reading teacher in a high needs, hard to staff school outside of Washington, DC.  I guess my stress relief resulted in a beautiful baby girl 9 months later!

I was very excited to welcome our bundle of joy (or bundle of cuteness as her cousins call her:) into our world.  And boy has she turned my world upside down!  Her original due date was July 16, but like her mother, she was fashionably late and made a grand entrance 11 days late after 27 hours of labor.  It was love at first sight, and I burst out into tears when I finally met our miracle. (Well, at first, I paused and stared at this little person my doctor held up.  It took a moment to register that I was now a mommy!)


Ever since, I’ve been obsessed with her and stage mini photo shoots in my house.  I never thought I would be a mother.  But now, I can’t imagine my life being anything else!  My petite princess weighed 6 1/2 pounds at birth and came home a few ounces lighter.  Everyone said she looked like a baby doll, so during an afternoon photo session, I decided to sit her in her stuffed animal box, and she fit right in!


I am now the mom who used to get on my nerves.  The one who posts Facebook status updates on diapers most likely to leak and prenatal pills most likely to make you vomit.  You know, the one who thinks it’s breaking news that her baby held up her head, rolled over, cooed, or smiled in her sleep.  The woman who wants to bring her baby to monthly girls night dinner clubs (and wonders why the girls said no:) The one who orders outfits online that her child will wear only once even when her baby’s wardrobe is now larger than her own.  I’m already enrolling in Mommy & Me Yoga, swimming and baby gym classes.  I’m learning and loving more everyday.  (Recently learned a $300 lesson about why baby bottles and Blackberries don’t mix.)


Just last night someone asked me if  I wished I didn’t leave Cayman.  I said no, because I have Baby C because I moved.  Sipping pina coladas on white sandy beaches has been replaced with bonding while breastfeeding.  VIP parties and comp five course dinners have been replaced with late night cuddling and mastering homemade, baby food recipes (I’ll take puree over lobster any day!) And wondering where I would live next and if I would fulfill my purpose has been replaced with a love that overflows; a love that replaces any hint of selfishness with sacrifice; a love that stretches your heart to the moon and back; a love that sparks laughter even when you are spit up or pooped on.  I am truly blessed and have no regrets.


Her father has given me the best gift I’ve ever received. Although the Cayman Islands is paradise, I would give it up over and over again for the new life I now live.  (But that’s not to say I won’t go back to visit and show my old life to my new daughter!)


Hey DFTM family–What life changes occurred when you became a mother?  Did you move to a new place?  Did you start a new job? What part of your past did you leave behind?

About The Author

Vlog Mom/DFTM Creator

Not long ago, Heather Hopson hosted a television show in the Cayman Islands. Today, she's back home writing a different kind of story as a new mom. In her 15 years working as a professional journalist, this by far is her best assignment! Growing up, she dreamed of becoming Oprah Winfrey. She was the features editor for her school’s newspaper and a teen talk show host for her city’s most popular radio station. She went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Michigan State University. After graduation, she worked as a television producer and reporter at CBS, NBC and Fox affiliates throughout the U.S. Instead of heading to Chicago to join Ms. Winfrey on her set, she bought a plane ticket to the Cayman Islands instead. She arrived five days before a category five hurricane! She lived in paradise for seven years, hosted an award-winning television show and traveled the globe with a government delegation. She also served on the board of directors for Big Brothers Big Sisters and spearheaded a Send a Kid to Camp campaign. Then, she relocated to Washington, D.C. to obtain a teaching certification and instruct 8th grade reading at a high needs middle school. She later returned to her hometown of Pittsburgh, PA to raise her daughter Caitlynn, now 4-years-old. During her 10-month-stint as a stay-at-home mom, Caitlynn inspired her to create this blog, and Diary of a First Time Mom was born on Mother’s Day 2012. Two years later, she expanded the family to include 20+ writers. Currently, Heather serves as the communications director at Allies for Children. In addition, she is the owner of Motor Mouth Multimedia, which ranked #49 in Startup Nation’s Home-Based 100 Competition sponsored by Discover Card and Sam’s Club. Recently, The Pittsburgh Foundation and The Heinz Endowments selected Heather to receive an Emerging Black Artist award to develop Diary of a First Time Mom.

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