Motherhood isn’t A Competition

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Motherhood is an adventure for sure; each age is a different roller-coaster for both mom and baby. In my personal experience, I have learned that it is okay not to be okay. If that makes any sense. I went into motherhood, thinking it was all rainbows and butterflies because that is how everyone makes it seem. It’s honestly not; my child is an asshole. Yeah, I said it. There are highs and lows, and as a new mom i’m still trying to figure out who I am as a person while trying to keep the tiny human alive. We all are, even if many of us don’t want to admit it. My child is 11 months old, and I am a hot mess when I think about her turning one in August (2019). I JUST went to the hospital yesterday, and then I blinked and BAM she’s almost one! HOW?!?  

I don’t fully understand why particular moms decide to make motherhood a competition, but I am here to tell you that it is not. It’s honestly exhausting. My child is enough to deal with; I don’t have time to worry about your child and what they are and aren’t doing developmentally. I don’t have the energy to tell you what you’re doing is right or wrong because I HAVE NO IDEA if it is or not. I would never make a mom feel bad for what shes doing, purposefully. I honestly felt terrible when my friend asked what she was doing wrong as a parent because her child isn’t walking yet, but every child is different. Every child develops differently. I honestly think you’re doing the best you can and that should be good enough.  

I’m a stay at home mom who just moved to a new country and is trying to make this foreign land a home. The situational depression is kicking in full swing, and most days, I wish I could just stay in bed, but I can’t because I have a tiny human depending on me. I’m an emotional wreck most days, especially when my kid is a nightmare. She’s too smart for her own good, and sometimes I feel like I’m not doing enough to help her develop, but somehow she’s learning. I’m doing the best that I can with the circumstances I’ve been given. Don’t get me wrong, I love this little person with all of my being and I feel guilty for feeling so down, but I cannot control it. Even though some people think I can just pick myself up, I try but it doesn’t work every day. I know I need to see a therapist but I just haven’t brought myself to call and make an appointment. Being a stay at home mom is lonely, rough, and definitely doesn’t pay enough. This little person depends on me 24/7 with little to no break. My family is on a completely different continent & time zone. It’s hard. It’s lonely. It’s exhausting. She’s into everything now that she’s mobile and it’s hard to keep up. But ill watch her in awe because she’s so smart! Sometimes you just need to step back and watch, because then my feelings change. My love for her grows when I stop and watch her grow. She’s changed my entire life in a positive way, I just need to stop and take a breather. I need to learn that my mental health is more important, especially when im not feeling 100%.

“Parenting today is virtually synonymous with worry. We want to ensure that our children are healthy, that they get a good education, and that they grow up to be able to cope with the challenges of modern life. In our anxiety, we are keenly aware of our inability to know what is best for our children. When should we toilet train? What is the best way to encourage a fussy child to eat? How should we protect our children from disease and injury?” (Apple, 2006). It’s all a guessing game, and I have no idea what on earth I am doing most of the time. Yes, the advice is encouraged, but when someone shoves their opinions down my throat, it is an entirely different story. I found a few mom’s who also want to let you know that you’re not alone.

YOU’VE GOT THIS MAMA

MOM ADVICE:

“just to love them and be there to listen to them. It’s so easy to pick them up and force them to do what we want/need them to do, but sometimes it’s rewarding to take a moment to see what they think or feel about what’s going on, and maybe they want to help or do whatever it is independently. Parenting is so difficult, and frustrating a lot of the times… but I try and watch what I say to my kid because she understands and she has so many feelings and emotions, I’d hate to break her heart.”

-Jessica

“Honestly. My best advice to a mother would be just to do what you have to do for your family. Just keep pushing through. Even on your worst day. And even if it doesn’t feel like you’re doing anything at the moment. Because that will be how it is. Some days it feels like you’re never doing enough, and some days it feels like you can’t possibly handle everything on your plate. But today might be horrible and the next day might be ten times more brutal. But five months, five years from now you’ll be able to look back at yourself and say, I did this. I kick ass. I did what I had to no matter how difficult it was for me to keep on going. you’ll be stronger for it, and it’ll all be worth it when you see the person you played a hand in raising and molding.”

-Anna

“Stay at home moms: Being a stay at home mom for the entirety of my child’s birth to toddlerhood, I will tell you that you have to make friends. You need that “village” all the other crazy facebook moms talk about. You won’t survive it without people in your court. Even if it’s just someone to hang out with at your home with their own little tiny terrorist children You have to have someone to laugh with, and bitch with about motherhood. Because motherhood is not easy. Being a stay at home, mom means that you are on duty 24/7, even when dad finally comes home from his job. Find someone besides your husband/partner to shoulder that burden with. Even if its just a 10 pm night run to Taco Bell together because the kids are asleep, the husbands are on baby duty, and you can enjoy 25 minutes with another human who understands the stress and struggle of being a stay at home mom. Embrace all of the chaos, (even when you guiltily wish the years would go faster so you can have some time to yourself), take all the pictures and let them make all the messes. Its cliche AF, but they are only little once, and the years go by so much faster than you will ever be ready for. Let them sleep with you, let them do your make up one day, let them play doctor when you accidentally cut yourself shaving in the shower. Through all the “rough” days, you will always look back on the good days and smile. Your tiny humans will always remember those good days too. AND, give yourself a break on the rough days. The days you snapped at them because something else pissed you off and by the time they asked for a snack the tenth time your patience is shot, and you take your frustration out on them, we’ve all done it, we all hate ourselves for it, but I promise you they will not remember, they will not hold grudges. They just want a hug and kiss later, and you probably need one too most days. Also, on the rough nights, its totally okay, and highly encouraged to go and sneak into their rooms once they are fast asleep, and give them one more kiss on the cheek. Try and embrace those little moments, because they are small, but they are everything.” -Danielle

“it’s okay to feel overwhelmed. It’s okay to feel tired, and sometimes it’s okay even to feel a little frustrated. You’re just human, and you cannot be perfect. But you’re the only mama they know and love, and that think you’re perfect. Also, don’t listen to other people who make you feel negative or bad about yourself they don’t know you or your life. You know what’s best for your family.”

-Abbie

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