It has been a very hard few weeks. Months. Year. I have struggled. I still struggle. Searching for a peace within it all, a peace that seems to be elusive, a place where I feel calm and clear and confident. In myself. I write about these emotions here, I write with ease about the secret feelings that spin around my mind creating a whirl pool that draws me in in the darkest part of night. I write my love and my pain and my most raw truths.
Sometimes I wonder why people read these blogs. I know why I write them. But why people read them? I read many blogs (much like this one) and have a list on bloglovin’ that is miles long. And I read every single post of every single blogger that I follow. Why? Well, not all of the blogs I read are about parenting or babies, so I do read them for different reasons. but at the end of the day I read them for inspiration. I read blogs for solidarity. To know that someone else out there, somewhere, is feeling what I’m feeling. Someone else is suffering from a lack of sleep. Someone else feels inadequate, someone else feels joyful but alone. That even though I’m here. Someone on the other side of the world is living a parallel life. And we are then alone, together.
Making us never truly alone at all. Which I love. There is nothing more heart breaking than feeling alone.
People want to read about other people struggles. They want to read pain and challenge and great success. They want to know that they aren’t alone in their insecurities. They want to be reminded that life is not fair, to all of us. That their petty day-to-day dramas are not theirs alone. We all want to cheer for the underdog. We want to read that someone else failed, so that we can say, me too! I did that too! We want to laugh at someone elses mistakes because it makes us feel less foolish about our own. Less lonely in this big wonderful mess that is life.
But being a parent. Being a lonely, challenged, frustrated parent is not the only kind of parent that is out there. And although I have my days… it is not the parent I am most days. There are moments, sure, where I feel like I’m not good enough.
But every day, every single day of Bo’s life, I have known that I am. I am a bloody great parent and I’m so proud to be one. And that joyous, confident statement should NOT be so hard to write.
I am a good mother. I know I am. I talk to my baby. I sit with her in the middle of the night when she can’t sleep and I hold her and I rock her and I whisper secrets into her ear. I’m not afraid to jump up and be present. I do not have a single regret about any decision for or about her. I don’t regret taking her to Indonesia and I don’t regret bringing her back. I trust my instincts most of the time, even when the push to change from other people is strong. I know that I am trying 100% to be the best role model I can be for her. EVERY. DAY. I know I am doing everything I can to respect her and show her that love, true love, is unconditional.
But sometimes I read these (baby) blogs, and I see one of two things. On one hand there are blogs where mamas write about how hard it is, how challenging it is, how they doubt themselves and falter. And on the other hand, there are blogs that portray the perfect life. Where every photo is set up, children are costumed and their hair is always neatly combed. Where style meets good food photography and the impeccable taste can sometimes feel a little daunting. They are both real in their own way, but neither is absolute. There is something missing.
What are we so afraid of? Why can’t we show the whole truth? Are we afraid of admitting that we are great (flaws and all)? Is it easier to admit our failings than our successes? Are we embarrassed of admitting that we LOVE this parenting gig. That even with all its drool and spit and smells and stickiness that we LOVE what we do. Even when we don’t like it, we know we are good at it. Are we scared of being called vain? Or arrogant? Isn’t that sad…
Don’t be afraid of admitting you’re not perfect. Because you’re not. You have failings just like each and every one of us. It’s what makes you human and sometimes it’s what makes you great. But don’t be afraid to admit that you’re awesome too. Admit it without shame, without precedence. Admit being a great parent without being afraid that someone will call you cocky or full of yourself. Give other parents the balls to against the grain and to admit that they are great too – even when they aren’t perfect.
So in the spirit of being not just good enough, but being GREAT at this parenting gig. Tell me… what do you do that makes YOU an awesome parent?
We are still trying to settle back into life in Australia. With sickness and nostalgia and confusion rife this week… we are a little behind. We will announce the winner of the Ergobaby doll carrier in the next post. Thanks for your patience, friends!