I read this post by Kate at The Small Things last night and it resonated with me on so very many levels. An excerpt:
If you are a parent it is no news to you that people will steal your beaming joy about a long nap or an evening of no fussing by telling you to "just wait" or "yeah, give it two more weeks and everything will be different. She'll never sleep again."
Sometimes, I think that's their way of trying to relate to you by sharing their experience with the same thing, that ultimately didn't go as well as you hope. The pessimism would temporarily get me down but I figured out how to push through it and not let it get to me. I preferred the "ignorant bliss" of hoping, just hoping, that the toughest night was behind me.
But, like I mentioned before, I feel emotionally stronger and am more resilient than I was even a few short weeks ago. I have found joy in parenting, and am even more thankful than ever that God gave Justin and I this gift.
Amen, sister. A-freaking-men.
Just like her, the thing I get most tired of hearing as a new mom is "just wait until..." This is for a couple reasons:
1) I feel like veterans moms and dads sometimes like to scare the ever-loving wits out of new parents just because they can.
2) It has such a negative connotation. Example: "Oh, you just wait until they start crawling. You'll just think you were tired before!"And while I'm sure that some of this is just anecdotal, it eats at a new mom who is trying her hardest to deal with the here and now, while ENJOYING the presence of her child.
My best example of this is something that happened to us at Christmas. We had taken Caroline to get a photo with Santa at our local shopping center. Several people in line commented on how mellow and calm she was, when suddenly, a father standing with two boys says, "Yeah, well just wait until next year when she can talk and walk. They turn into brats then."
Couple things, dear sir. For starters, my child isn't yours. Maybe she will be more difficult next year, it's quite possible. Maybe she won't be. But you don't get to determine her fate, now do you?
Also, how lovely that you refer to your own children, right in front of their faces, as "brats".
Another example: we were shopping in Dillard's with the baby at New Year's and she was smiling and cooing at people in line. A mom of a toddler boy said, "Enjoy it now. He," she points to her son, "was all smiles last year at this time when he was about her age, but I'd rather eat glass than spend a day out with this kid now." Now, I'm sure she didn't really think about the words she was using in reference to spending time with her son, but it ran all over me.
Do I naively believe that life will be all daisies and sunshine with a baby? Um, no.
For the love of Pampers, there are hard, HARD, days NOW.
I've been peed on, pooped on, thrown up on, been up all night with a sick baby, had days where eating and showering didn't happen.
And of course there are new challenges as she gets older. But that's the thing. They are NEW. There were other challenges, different ones, when she was a newborn. Those have since gone away and been replaced by new ones as she is developing into her own little person.
So anyway, all that to say, let's be positive about our children. Better yet, let's help build up other new parents. Support each other. Be a rock (a positive one) for another parent. (My sister-in-law is one of the BEST lifter-uppers I have in my life.) Remind others of how each day spent with their child is a precious one and how they have much to look foward to.
Just one new mom's thoughts.