Now that I am a mother...

I feel I need to make amends to those parents before me that I judged in ways that I simply couldn't understand:
To my older cousin whom I unfairly judged when she was still breastfeeding her 14 month old son.  At the time (and to be fair I was 22) I just thought it was so gross and ridiculous that she let her walking and talking son with teeth treat her like a snack bar (he'd lift up her shirt while she was mid-sentence and start crying for milk).  Now that I am a nursing mother myself I realize what a gift it is to be able to nourish a baby, both physically and emotionally, with my milk.  If all goes well, I hope to be nursing Libby well after her first birthday.

To my brother and sister-in-law who received all sorts of flack from me for letting their daughter sleep with them until she was about 3 years old.  Now, with my own, I see the importance of bed-sharing to foster the nursing relationship, especially as a working mother.  I also recognize the benefits for and/or bed-sharing (if done safely) is the natural thing for a mother and baby to do.  And for what it's worth, I see my niece, now 8, sleeps just fine on her own, in her own bed, in her own room.

To my friends who used a blow dryer to create white noise and calm their newborn baby.  Boy, I though they were nuts.  Now I know better.  They're geniuses!  It's the only way we can get our baby to calm down when she's totally ramped up and crying at the top of her lungs!

To every parent on a plane or in a store who's had a screaming kid that I gave the side-eye too.  I now realize that you know how annoying it is to everyone else that your kid is screaming.  But even more, I now know that it's pure torture for you to see your baby in pain (physical and/or emotional) and that his/her crying stirs a biological response that is overwhelming and the last thing you needed was a complete stranger passing judgement on you. 

Finally, to my former self...who thought she would never want to be a mother...."how ordinary, how expected!"  I am sorry that I almost denied you this wonderful gift...for the promise of a career or not being tied down or whatever it was that I feared might happen if you were to have children.  I am glad you waited, until the time was really right for you...when you truly yearned to become a mother.  And now that I am, no amount of fame or money or glamour could ever replace how I feel as a mother.  It's the most amazing thing in the world. It's truly transformative. And I am so lucky be able to experience its awesomeness.


Lori said...

What a post! I loved it. Having kids changes EVERYTHING about how you perceive the world, doesn't it?

Becca said...

Lori, what an amazing post! I can't wait to be a Momma!!

Much Love,
Becca (nickandnora knottie)