Is there anything more magnificent, yet confusing, than being mom? Because we live in a time where streaming information causes brain overload or a short circuit, I’ve often thought the pioneer women might have had an easier time mothering. Then I remembered epidurals hadn’t be invented yet. They must have had brain overloads and short circuits of a different sort because giving birth to 6 or 10 kids was kind of the norm.
“Well, humph, she endorses drugs during birth,” I can hear someone thinking out loud. No, not really. I gave birth to two with drugs and one without. The one without was my last. I’m not saying that cured me, but the first two sort of paved the way for the third. But, it’s just like every aspect of being a parent ... there are so many right ways to do everything from buying diapers, to where and when the baby should sleep, to how long to breast feed or not.
It’s as if no matter what you do someone will tell you you’re not doing it right. No wonder there is a rise in postpartum depression. We’re all worn out from trying to do it right because of something “they say.” Who are “they” anyway? “They” must be really smart because they are quoted a lot. I’ve often wanted to find and tell them to just be quiet because they are making the rest of us feel bad and look like dummies.
Don’t get me wrong, but you’ll have to agree so much conflicting expert information can leave us so confused we wonder what ever made us think we were capable of taking care of another human. Some of the best advice I ever heard was from an older woman who had brought dinner to a new mom. She said, “Everyone is going to give their advice whether you want to hear it or not. Ignore the horror stories and politely smile and listen to the rest. Then do whatever the heck you think is best for you and your baby.” I thought that was brilliant.
Next time you see a frazzled mom, instead of loading her down with advice, offer to run an errand for her or keep her kiddo for a couple of hours so she can take a nap. We’re all in this game together. Let’s lock arms and encourage each other.
What’s the most encouraging thing someone has ever said or done for you on the Mom front?