I’ll let you into a little secret…. Now and again I forget to take my contraceptive pill, and all hell breaks loose. Suddenly I’m back Googling early signs of pregnancy like it’s 2014. Only this time it’s with a mild panic.
Don’t get me wrong, if we had an accidental pregnancy I’m sure we would welcome it with open arms. (Unexpected second child, if you’re reading this, Mummy and Daddy think you’re amazing! Thanks for rocking up.)
It’s just that I’m forty this year, it took us a very long time to have a successful pregnancy, and realistically my body doesn’t have a great track record at staying pregnant (you can read more about that here).
One thing I wasn’t prepared for when motherhood kicked off was the amount of time I’d spend feeling guilty. When I haven’t actually done anything wrong!
That DREADED mum guilt. Do you know the thing I mean? It seems to pop up everywhere, like an uninvited jack-in-the-box, with a dumb taunting face and stupid flashing fairy lights. Quite honestly, I wish it would just pee off.
It can quite happily invite itself to any situation. Wobbly toddler has a little topple (whilst you may have been checking your phone)? GUILTY. Baby gets nappy rash because you tried out those two-for-one nappies? GUILTY ONCE MORE.
And if you caught my recent post about comparing your little one to others, you’ll know I feel that panic every time I see a child acing something I haven’t taught my offspring to do.
(Ooh, excited side note – I have a FREEBIE for you at the end..!)
Guilty About the Little Things
Now here’s a mum guilt example. When I was pregnant, I read ALL OF THE BOOKS. I mean, I love a good book anyway, and who doesn’t get excited about a project(!)
Well, this one book called Brain Rules for Baby suggested that children under two shouldn’t watch TV. It was written by a very clever brain scientist, so who was I to argue. (Yes, yes, I know. First time mum with all those crazy ideals! PFFFFFFFFF.)
Stop comparing yourself to others! But urgh, why is it so hard..?
Comparing yourself or your child to others will steal your happiness. Yep, that’s right. It will rock right up in its woolly balaclava and snatch the very joy from your delicate little palms.
So today I’m thinking about why we do this to ourselves and how we can just flaming well stop it! Because we should just concentrate on being fabulous us, have faith in our parenting skills and be proud of our gorgeous little bundles of craziness in all their ratty, snotty glory.
Hell yeah mummies, let’s crack this.
Should you stop comparing yourself to others completely?
OK, I’ll admit it. Just like the big guy with the twiddly moustache from the advert says, a bit of comparison can be a useful thing.
I mean let’s face it, none of us are born knowing how to mum. We learn and take our inspiration from others, to some extent. I know I’m often taking a sneak peek at how other mums do things and thinking bloody brilliant, I’m stealing that snazzy little trick.
Ooh, I’ve got a treat in store for you this week. Drum roll. We’re having a special guest – and she’s bubbling over with ideas on how to keep your kids quiet over the holidays. Erm, I mean lovely toddler learning games…
Now here’s the thing. I’ve bitched about toddler groups. I’ve moaned about tantrums. So the heat is really on to keep this child of mine entertained. And seeing as his becoming a brain surgeon is pretty much my retirement plan, it needs to be educational as well as fun. I do like to multi-task.
So that’s why I’ve brought one of my lovely blogger friends, Nanny Maryanne, to the rescue. Her website is here if you can’t resist knowing more:
She’s here to help me, and of course you delightful bunch, with her invaluable Nanny advice on toddler learning games. She’s going to divulge some invaluable tips on easy games you can play at home without having to fork out for a bunch of stuff (and fill your house with more kiddie crap!).
Yep, how lucky are we. The advice of an actual professional Nanny without having to pay for a thing. Bloody hell, we’re getting dead fancy.
I didn’t realise what a mother was until I became one.
When I was a child, you were someone who took charge of all the things and told me I couldn’t stay up late playing Barbie Rock Star. In my heart I was grateful you were always there with your hugs and your patience, but I didn’t realise it then.
When I was a teenager, you were someone who nagged about short skirts and said no to bad boyfriends. In my heart, I was grateful you showed me how to be strong and brave and to believe in myself, but I didn’t realise it then.
When I grew up, you became a best friend. I was growing into you – we liked the same things. We scavenged at flea markets, fought over bargains, shared inspiration. But that wasn’t all you were. I didn’t realise it then.
Now That I Am a Mother
Now that I am a mother, though still new, I begin to sense what it means – the sheer enormity of what you have given.