Tuesday, 26 March 2013

To be a good mom:

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I've realized a lot since having kids.

One of the things though that I've unfortunately learned is that there's a lot of pressure to do what others think is correct in order to feel confident that you're being a good mom.

Mya--first moments home from the hospital 2 yrs ago (and beautiful blanket courtesy of the amazing Jane P!)

Mya in Dominican -5months old 
Before I gave birth to Mya I wrestled with the idea of reading a million books on child-rearing before she was born because honestly, the pressure was on. 

With a round belly quickly growing, I was constantly approached by others with "Have you started reading yet?" "Have you read this book, or that book?". And I hadn't read any of them. Not one.


So I started reading. Casually reading...but reading nonetheless. Because that's what I was supposed to be doing, right? To be a good mom. Yes, read the books, everyone said. 

But the problem was that every time that I pulled that baby book out to scan through another opinion from another expert about how to raise my babies/kids, I came back to the fact that I really believed that mothering should come more naturally to me--that my maternal instincts would be stronger than what any book could provide. And that if I was really at a loss at some point throughout this whole mothering experience, I would talk to other mom's and/or my doctor, get their advice, maybe pull out a certain section from a book and just figure it out, as mothers have done for years. 

So I stopped reading. I didn't even get through one whole book. I just stopped. 

And you know what? We made it through all of those crazy first few months of having a new baby at home. And we're still alive as we're currently attempting to conquer the wild world of two year olds (along with introducing a new baby into the mix as well). All without having read all of the books that everyone told me that I should be reading.


Carter-first few days in the NICU

But you know what else? There have also been a few times when I've thought to myself  "Man, maybe I should have read up on this ahead of time". 
(So all you parents out there who are avid readers--I think you may be on to something!). 

Carter-a couple weeks old  

So my point is that even though everyone might do things a little bit differently, everyone is just trying. Trying to do their best as a parent. Trying to make the right decisions for their family. Trying to give their children their all. Trying to be the best parent that they can possibly be. 

Because, to be honest...

Moms who read all of the books are great moms.
Moms who don't read all of the books are great moms.

Moms who strictly breastfeed are great moms.
Moms who strictly formula feed are great moms.

Moms who put their kids in daycare are great moms.
Moms who keep their kids at home with them are great moms.

Moms who sleep-train their babies are great moms.
Moms who co-sleep are great moms.

The reality is that every good mom is simply trying her best. 

Aren't we all??

That's the beauty of motherhood. As long as we're trying, we're all doing a great job.















  

1 comment:

  1. Well said, Erica! Motherhood is as unexpected journedy as can be. Along the way we need instincts AND information... But most of all we need confidence and support for whatever we decide. Trying equals love and that's the essential common thread of mothering.
    Hope everyone is happy and healthy in your household. Enjoy MAT leave!
    Erika

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