This blog post was not prompted by an isolated event, but because of the dreadful “mommy judgments” I feel or hear, in general. Any mom knows that we are our own worst critic, but hearing comments from other moms is not a ton of fun either. We brush these comments off, but they do build up after time. We feel the need to justify the choices we make for our children, or often feel judged if we haven’t laid out a clear explanation as to why we might be doing certain things with/for our child(ren). This pressure takes its toll on all of us mommies and is only magnified when you have more than one child. That being said, I feel the need to put some things out there. Judge them all at once. At the end of the day, I count it a blessing that my children are happy and loved. I know I have done my job well and I thank the Lord above that He has given me the means to raise my children the way I choose to.
Confessions of a tired mommy….
• I had an epidural with both of my labors. I think it is silly that there is this public opinion that you are somehow better because you gave birth “naturally”. I think that any woman who survives labor and delivery, or a c-section, deserves a medal no matter what kind of pain medicine was administered. Besides, I found out that I am one of those lucky ladies that an epidural doesn’t work on. Ever heard of the “pocket of pain” (as my anesthesiologist called it)? Well there is such a thing, so I felt every one of my contractions. Ask my husband. So technically, I can say that I have done it “naturally”. But I don’t want to say that. I don’t care. I had an epidural and I would do it again, if I were going to have more kids (not that it would work on me).
• My babies were formula-fed and they turned out just fine. And this one is a touchy subject for me. Attempt #1: child wouldn’t nurse and we tried for two months. Attempt #2: child nursed for five months and then decided she was done with it. I have never been ashamed to say that I think nursing is weird, BUT I was all for the nutritional benefit for my babies and I liked that it is FREE. It was not easy to come to the formula decision either time (but especially with the second one, since she was capable of nursing) and I DO take it personally when people act like formula is poison for a baby.
• I give my kids fruit snacks. Say what? As a matter of fact, I buy them in bulk at Costco.
• I give my kids granola bars WITH chocolate chips in them. Why you ask? Because they taste good.
• I let Jaycoby play Wii and have computer time. Right now it is his passion. I let him do it because he likes it and he is REALLY good at it. Nuff said.
• I use disposable diapers. Laundry is not a chore I enjoy. Poopy diapers are not on the list of things I am fond of either. The quicker we can ‘getter done’ the better. And I will pay for the luxury of the disposables. To me it is worth it.
• I don’t buy organic unless it is on accident. 1) It is usually more expensive. 2) I can’t taste a difference. 3) My husband was raised on a farm. Pesticides were a part of his upbringing, so understandably he has an issue with rebelling against them. LOL
• I give my children juice….and I don’t always dilute it. GASP! In fact, I gave Jaycoby juice in a bottle when he was teeny tiny. And I think you would too if you saw your itty bitty baby with a prolapsed rectum because he had been so extremely constipated. It’s a terrible sight! I would have given him whiskey in a bottle if that is what the pediatrician told me. I was going to do whatever it took to make him more comfortable.
• I let Jaycoby have SODA when we go out to FAST FOOD. That’s right. He will get Dr. Pepper with his happy meal. Am I the worst mom ever or what? :-) He happens to think it is pretty cool. • I have never had my kids sleep in my bed….or even my room. This is for their safety. If mommy isn’t getting quality sleep, she will be a bad mommy. I cannot sleep well if my children are in my room making all sorts of adorable sounds, or laying in my bed and trying to steal my covers. This is why some genius came up with a thing we call a baby monitor. And I have been spoiled with the video kind, so all is good. I can check on them as many times as I want from the comfort of my own bed (while they are tucked safely in theirs).
• TV is not a curse word in our house. And, yes, I have been known to let it “babysit my child”. I KNOW there are worse things that my child could be doing than watching Sesame Street and Super Why!
• I let my baby sleep with blankets and a bumper in her crib. This is when the video monitor comes in handy (especially when you have a baby that insists on pulling the blankets over her face before drifting off). It might require extra attention, but I always go back to this: “we slept with blankets in our cribs when we were babies and we turned out just fine”.
This all looks horrible in list form, but of course I do all of these things in moderation. Actually, you know what? Some of them we don’t do in moderation and I am okay with that. And I am perfectly okay with the fact that other people do it differently. I would be lying if I said I never think: “Why in the world do people do ‘xyz’ with their kids?”. But just because I don’t understand it, or it isn’t what we do with our kids, does not make it wrong. I still might think it is weird, but not wrong :-). I just try to remember Ephesians 6:4- “Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.” As long as we are following this instruction, it doesn’t matter how many fruit snacks they consume. Okay. I’m getting off my soapbox.