motherhood and typology

An alternative title for this post could be “Why I Love Being a Mama.” I mean, I thought I would like it. That’s why we got pregnant. But I didn’t realize how much I would love it.

As you know, my pregnancy was not my favorite nine months. But as soon as my baby girl arrived, I felt like my pregnancy had lasted all of two days, while my baby had been with me forever. And I’ve felt incredible. My ankles and toes shrunk back down to size instantly. My heartburn disappeared. I have experienced zero postpartum depression. I’ve even lost 35 pounds already, leaving me only 10 pounds away from my pre-pregnancy weight. My strategy? Eat whatever I want to celebrate no more heartburn (and I breastfeed).

As the days have gone by and I’ve had time to ponder, I’ve thought about how my enjoyment of motherhood could fit with my personality type. I realize this is a little overboard to bring Meyers Briggs into the mix, but indulge me for a few moments.

According to Meyers and Briggs, I am an INTJ: Introverted, iNtuitive (theoretical, future-focused), Thinking (logical), Judging (organized). From what I can tell, having a daughter for a whole two months now (I am practically a veteran), being a parent utilizes my temperament strengths. Parenting knowledge combines some of my favorite subjects: psychology, anthropology, physiology, biography, creativity – really all aspects of life must be integrated into figuring out who she is and how to best care for her. I get to study and become an “expert” on my daughter. And she is constantly changing, so my research is never done. I get to teach her everything I know, one on one. She is a long-term “project” – one that I must plan for while holding very loosely and adapting to daily surprises. I have to rely on my instincts with yogic perception. For now, I get to manage all aspects of her schedule and strategize outings. Not that she has much of a schedule at this point, but I’m in charge of making sure she eats and sleeps and bathes and stays comfortably cool (she gets her super warm-bloodedness from her papa), keeps her doctor appointments and has clean clothes that fit. And she’s just so much fun! She’s recently been building on her vocabulary of coos and goos and giggles, and we have long, smiley conversations that thrill us both. I’m nostalgic about the moments we’ve already navigated; I thoroughly enjoy the stage we’re in; and I look forward to our upcoming adventures. Everything Emma does is exciting to me. Being her mother is essentially my ideal occupation.

And as an added bonus to this post for any like-minded readers, here are a few parental favorites I’ve enjoyed as part of my baby research:
Online article: Co-Sleeping: Fostering Independence by Tracy Cassels
Get Me Out by Randi Hutter Epstein
The Baby Book by William and Martha Sears
What’s Going on in There? by Lise Eliot
News clip: Co-sleeping research, Fox 6 News Milwaukee

If you’re looking for more typology information, I recommend starting at mypersonality.info. The test is free with a spam-free account. But you might be able to assess your type just from the Preference comparisons. After you’ve gleaned some overview info, there are several helpful resource links at the bottom of each type’s page.

I have a hunch that parenting affinities apply to each personality type in its own unique way, but I can only speak for my own experience now. I’d be interested to hear your experience… What do you like (or think you would like) about being a parent?

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