Everybody goes into pregnancy thinking they’re going to be the cool mom. The mom that’s always put together. You see frantic new moms with their babies that don’t seem to know what to do with the babies and you seriously don’t get why not. You have friends and family with children and you’re great with them and you think how different could it really be?
It’s been said before that the belief that you’ll be better at parenthood than the examples you’ve seen is evolutionary. If you really believed that it was as hard as everyone said it was, then no one would ever have kids and we would cease to exist! So before you have kids, you imagine that every obstacle that every mom has ever complained about from sleeping to eating to behavioral issues will somehow escape you and that motherhood will not make you any less chill than you were before.
In reality, having a child for a few hours or even a day or two is completely different than permanently having a child that you’re continually tasked with keeping alive. You’re also more attached to your own child than other children and just like with anything else, the closer you are to the decision the more emotions may get mixed up in your decision making. You may know that the best thing for your child is to sleep train them but just the thought of letting your child cry breaks your heart. You may be 100% aware of the fact that you should be sleeping when the baby sleeps but find it impossible because there are so many other things that you need to do in a day.
No one ever thinks they’re going to be the mom with a baby attached to their boob during an entire nap or the mom that’s constantly chasing a toddler around with food begging them to just lick the broccoli before saying they don’t like it! We never think we’ll be the mom who takes an hour detour home during a car ride because that’s the only way to get the baby to sleep or the mom that gets extreme anxiety when their baby misses a nap. In some way shape or form, we all become that mom and if you have found or find yourself in a situation where your expectations about the type of mom you’d thought you be don’t quite look like the mom that you actually are, don’t beat yourself up. We all learn when we’re deep in it that it’s a lot harder than we ever could’ve imagined.
There will be some things that you swore you would never do, that you actually never do and there will be some things that you say you would never do that you find yourself doing often. From saying that you’ll never introduce your children to screen time to being absolutely positive that you’ll never co-sleep, it’s easy to say what you would do with your hypothetical children before you have them and critique another mother's skills before we become mothers ourselves. And while some moms may struggle with one thing, other moms struggle with multiple things. In the end, we do what we have to do to keep our children safe and healthy. What we all learn is that being a mom isn’t about being cool. It’s about setting a good example for your children, it's about giving them structure and consistency. It's about taking great care of them, raising your little ones to be amazing human beings and doing the best that you can.