At 25, I became a mom to the most precious little monster. My husband and I had absolutely no idea what the heck we were doing. All of a sudden I was holding a baby that I was 100% responsible for. Let that sink in, as a parent, you are responsible for keeping a tiny human alive.
Suddenly my mind was filled with doubt. Am i qualified for this? Are you sure I can be trusted? What if I screw up?
As a first time parent you’ve got to give yourself a break. You WILL make mistakes! Chances are, you will make several.
If you’re still pregnant, you probably have it all planned out. You’re going to breastfeed, co-sleeping is not an option, the baby won’t watch any TV until he is at least two and then it’ll be limited. And when current parents tell you “good luck”, you get upset and mumble under your breath “I don’t need your luck”.
I was right there!
I had everything planned out, I was ready to be the perfect mom. Then my son was born.
I was able to breastfeed, but I had to supplement with formula because I wasn’t producing enough. I started out with my son in his crib, but non of us were sleeping. The minute I arranged for him to co-sleep with us, it was all on the up and up. And the kid started watching The Wiggles at about a year.
Plans change. You change. When you become a parent your ideals will change.
The key to feeling like a successful parent is rolling with the punches. Being able to change and adapt to your new way of life and what will not only suit you, but will suit your now family.
I think the thing that so many parent (and moms especially) screw up with is trying to compete or compare themselves with other moms. Every child is different and every family is different. The sooner we as parents realize and accept that, the better off and happier we will be.
I’ve quite often been the girl who marches to the beat of her own drum. I am who I am all the time and I like it that way.
As a first time mom though that seemed to change. For the first time in a long time, I was worried about what other people thought of me and my parenting skills. I never wanted to look like the bad parent and I instantly took offense to someone saying anything about my child or parenting methods.
I can clearly remember that on Brady’s first trip to his first ever doctors appointment, my husband and I forgot a diaper bag. We didn’t even own a diaper bag at that point. When we got to the doctor, they asked us if we had any diapers for the baby and we just looked at each other in embarrassment. What kind of parents forget a diaper bag on their first trip with their newborn to the doctor?
You can read book after book or post after post but there is no full manual that comes with your newborn. Those books are all for the older models. You have the newest model, and while some of the settings may be the same, there will definitely be some differences. You may just have to use the trial and error method.
An example of using the trial and error method:
Recently my husband and I tried to take away the pacifier. Brady’s pediatrician told us to use the cold turkey method. So we did. That did not go well at all. The first night was okay, but the second night he cried for two straight hours. I’m not talking just whimpering, I’m talking straight up screaming. By the end of it I was crying too. I couldn’t stand to see my baby like this. After the two hours we gave in and let him have his pacifier. We then decided that the cold turkey method was not for us and have since gone on another path.
We made a mistake, but we rolled with the punches and read the signs our toddler was giving us. We had a plan, but we had to make adjustments for the sake of our sanity and our son.
As a mom, I challenge all of the moms out there to stop trying to compete and compare yourself to other moms. Instead, be the mom (or dad) that your kid needs, be present. No one is perfect, you will make mistakes. But, as long as you show your children love and attention, you will be perfect in their eyes.