This last week I had the luxury to have a couple of girls' nights out...a gang of moms who work hard at their full-time jobs and ready to blow off some steam. The evening always goes something like this - we talk about work, share current photos of our kids, laugh about the crazy antics they do, and then commiserate how overwhelming it is to juggle everything. It's like group therapy with wine. And we throw out in the bonfire guilt ridden feelings such as "I feel like I am sucking at everything" or "Should I quit my job to be a stay at home mom?". We reciprocate, we console yet we never find an anecdote.
Coincidentally, I came across an article on the Huffington Post, written by another mom out there who tortures herself with the same type of mother's guilt. Ladies, it's nice to know we aren't alone.
Amy Morrison, blogger of the Pregnant Chicken, writes "Why You're Never Failing as a Mother"...and her persepective on modern day parenting was enlightening. Morrison elaborates that the root of present day mother's guilt is purely generational. Decades long ago, in a world where babies didn't sit in car seats, and the debate over organic vs. non organic didn't exist, moms did not feel the pressure to master and perfect the skill of parenting. Their role as a mother was to rear their 6 or 7 children, tidy the house and put food on the table. And even back then, you were surrounded by moms and sisters next door to lend you an extra hand. By no means am I discounting parenting back then - I mean they didn't have iPads or washing machines.
Nowadays, parenting goes beyond just feeding, bathing and sleeping and the bar has been set high. We're expected to competitively work a full time job by day and be a kick a$% mom by night. To abide by strict nap/feed schedules (Ferber, Babywise, Sears) buy organic and BPA free everything, and enroll our kids in every gym and music class out there. And on top of that, add a layer of social media scrutiny with mom's bragging on their facebook status, posting their weight loss on instagrams, and even the super moms posting their DIY crafts and recipes on Pinterest. Does this all sound familiar? This resonated with me as it made me realize... am I my own worst enemy? But Morrison reminds us moms that we are in a new realm of mommy-hood and we are "pioneers" to this new generation of parenting..."Your job is to provide your child with food, shelter, encouragement and love..." So keep reminding yourself, we're not failing as a mother, we're nearly just adapting.
Photo source via here