I have a secret to tell you.
I really, really loved breastfeeding my babies. I loved it so much I fed them both from my breasts for nearly two years each. I nursed my first son while pregnant with my second. And man, I loved every single second of it. I cried for two days when I decided to wean my second and last baby. I will always remember the way the tops of their heads looked and smelled as they nursed. It is a memory emblazoned in my soul.
I am afraid to admit this though because I have been told that if I did I would be shaming other moms who struggled to nurse. I would never want to make another mother feel bad about her choice or struggle.
You see, I think sometimes in an effort to "not shame mothers" (all for the not shaming btw), we have made celebrating our own joys as a sort of shame-inducing thing for other mothers. And man, I think that kind of stinks.
So here is my plea... Moms, dads, SAHMs, working mamas and every kind of mama, can we bring back more of the celebration? Feelings of accomplishment no matter the feat. Praise for a job well done, whatever that job is.
I am never going to say "breast is best" or working moms have it harder, or anything like that. Nope, I am not here for that. I am, however, going to do my very best and do what works for me. I would love some space to feel good about that. And in turn, I would love to praise you for your choices, your accomplishments and your mommy style
I want to hear about how great your kid is at soccer. I really want you to brag as much as possible about her athletic prowess. She scored three goals today? So amazing! We need more of that mom-brag and swag.
I will tell you right now, my kid is not that soccer star, but you sharing how awesome your daughter is will not make me feel ashamed. I want to celebrate you and revel in your pride even while my kid is taking his 10th water break of a 20-minute game.
Mom life is legit hard right? If you are anything like me, you worry approximately 7,453 times a day about your kids— are they "normal," are they succeeding, am I making sure they are not turning into legit insane monsters?
Mom life is also riddled with self-doubt (hey there, talking about myself again!), insecurity and uncertainness. So I understand the need to make sure we are never shaming another mama. I work hard at this, and I also work hard to make it clear that just because a mama parents differently, it doesn't mean it's better or worse.
Since mom-life has all these stressors, I really want to see if we can let go of the idea that sharing our joys and triumphs means we are shaming one another.
Your kid sleeps through the night every night at 2 weeks old? Um, so I may be the most jealous ever, but goodness, I am so happy for you and genuinely want to celebrate you.
Your kindergartner is reading chapter books and mine is over here coloring outside the lines and still gets confused between his b's and his d's? I am so proud of your buddy and you! Mine will get there, in his own time, as it is meant to be.
Share with me, celebrate with me, beam with pride, mama.
What do you say, mamas? Can we start to share those joys a little more? Celebrate those accomplishments of the tiny humans we are working so hard to raise? Find the joy in our friends' kids and our own?
I'll start. Today my 3-year-old only cried a little when I dropped him off at preschool. He typically screams. Tiny victories Mama, they count too.