In the last year, a lot of my wonderful lifelong friends have become moms. I've discussed what happens when your friends have babies more than once. I've also discussed all of my own fears about having kids of my own. Spoiler alert, I'm still deathly afraid of having my own kids. My darling class of children this year has done nothing to help that. I know I said I would have kids now if I could skip the pregnancy part and just pop out a five year old, but I lied. Five year olds can really be the worst, ha ha.
Here is what my many mommy friends have taught me:
1. Babies are cute. Yup, I said it. I'm still not a baby person, but I may like when a baby gives me a cute smile/laugh combination close to as much as I love absurd five year old comments and the click moment when they are learning to read. Close.
Plus, imagine how cute these kiddos will be when they can talk? I'm sure hilarious things will be said.
2. Moms can still work full time, and the world will not come crashing down. Clearly I knew this, in theory, but I previously had only one example of a working mom among my friends up until the last year. Every single one of my friends has gone back to work full time, and guess what? Their babies are okay, they are okay, and everyone is happy and healthy. It's sort of a theme throughout these lessons that my friends have just taught me there are so many different ways to do this mother thing and none of them are wrong :) (well- there are wrong things, but my friends aren't' doing those things!)
3. Moms can still make time for their top priorities. Babies need a lot. They take up a lot of time, energy and of course sleep. This has me fearing that my life will become one mess of taking care of babies and work kids and that is all. My mom friends have shown me that I probably will have to cut down on some of the lower priorities in my life, but that if i really want to do something, I can still do it.
4. Babies don't need a ton of stuff. Well, they do need a ton of stuff if you want to just go out for the afternoon, but everyone who knows me knows this won't really be an issue for me since I am already the most over prepared, giant bag carrier ever. Much lower on my list of fears, but still there nonetheless is the insane amount of STUFF that kids have. I sit at baby showers thinking…. oh my god, I do not ever want that much crap in my house! What my friends have taught me is that baby stuff is very similar to wedding stuff. Many parents want a lot of stuff, just like many brides register for things I couldn't even name. I think that is wonderful for them, because that is what they want. However, I have a couple of friends with babies and kids, who have showed me that babies will still be happy even if we don't buy or register for every possible item. Let the Babies R Us boycott continue.
5. Moms don't have to be perfect. For every style/debate/decision of parenting, it seems there are people who want to argue. This is better, that is better. It's all very overwhelming. It's obvious to me that there is a lot of pressure on moms to do things a certain way. But the great news is, no one knows what the best way really is. Which leaves it up to my smart and wonderful mommy friends to make decisions that work the best for them. I love this. My mom friends have taken so many different approaches to feeding their baby, putting their baby to sleep, and many more decisions and all the babies are happy, smiling and for the most part, sleeping. It's so comforting to know that there are many right ways.
Happy Mother's Day to all my wonderful mom friends- and most importantly to my own mom, who set my expectations for a mom so high that I fear I will never meet them :) and of course to Eric's mom, who is the dream Mother in law to have, and I am very, very lucky.
By next Mother's Day, I will find a photo with my mom that actually includes my brother :) I swear he exists.