This year will be my first Mother’s Day celebrating as a mother. I look at my son and think how awesome and wonderful he is, but I also see all the things I wish I had done and I begin to feel like a failure. He’s only 9 months old, but in those 9 months, there is so much I wish I had done differently. I wish I was brave enough to put him in his own room at 6 months, I wish we did more tummy time so he would be crawling now, I wish I breastfed him longer, etc etc etc. But it’s times like this when my husband will come home and comment on how I’m doing such a good job. Now, my husband has never raised children before, but I love hearing him say that to me. Because in our society we mothers second guess nearly every single thing we do, and if we’re not questioning ourselves, believe me, someone else is doing it. Everyone has an opinion on how you’re raising your children.
But, unless abuse is involded, no one else’s opinion matters unless you let it matter. People will tell you that your 2 year old shouldn’t be drinking out of a bottle, that your 3 year old should be potty trained by now, or that your 9 month old should be crawling, but those people aren’t your child’s parent. They don’t know your child the way you do, no one does. You’re the one responsible for that little person, no one else. That’s sometimes a hard pill to swallow. You look at the little person you were blessed with and you think, “How on earth am I going to do this?!” But you can. It’s hard, but it’s so rewarding. You don’t think your baby is watching you, or learning anything, but then he turns to you and starts clapping and saying “Ma ma ma ma”. It’s one of the best feelings ever.
I posted something on my Facebook page a few months ago with a picture of my smiling son, and the caption said this.
“My son is formula fed, uses a pacifier, wears disposable diapers, synthetic fabric blends in his clothes, has watched television and eats store bought baby food. But he’s healthy, happy, thriving and he’s loved. He’s no better than a baby whose breastfed, doesn’t use a pacifier, and wears organic cloth diapers. But he’s no worse either. Putting mothers down just because they’re raising their child differently than you would, is hurtful. Mothers are supposed to help each other, not tear each other apart.”
So, no matter how you had your baby, by natural or medicated birth, cesarean section, adoption or surrogacy. No matter how you choose to care for your baby, with cloth or disposable diapers, breast or bottle, baby led weaning, or not. Your baby is beautiful and you’re a beautiful Mama. We’re strong, we’re capable, we have little ones who depend on us, and we are awesome. So happy Mother’s Day to all you Mama’s. Love and squeeze the people who made you what you are, then go take a hot bubble bath, because you deserve it 😉