I realize that the title of my post would probably be confusing to readers. I just want to say that I am all about women’s empowerment and uplifting one another. With that being said, I will not be on this post bashing, anyone. Furthermore, I will never be on my blog posting looking down on what someone else does as their parenting style type. If you ask me, I think there are different styles for different situations, and there is more than one way to do something, especially in parenting.
What makes a good mother? Am I a good mother? As subjective as those questions are, we often look towards others to solidify those answers. Sometimes we do so without noticing. With motherhood or even parenthood in general, you will have a lot of ups and downs. Now you can sit and sulk in your downs, or you can choose to get up and learn from them.
I was telling a mother on Instagram the other day that we’re providers, educators, and we wear so many different hats. We do all the things that prove we are good moms. It’s insane how one little thing happens, no matter how big or small or even if it was out of our control, within a blink of an eye, we’re calling ourselves bad moms. For a while, I contemplated telling the story about my biggest disappointment as a mom. Mainly because of fear of being vulnerable, but I am ready to share it.
Biggest Disappointment in Motherhood
When my child was around 1-year old, I decided we were going to have a movie night. I told her to stay in bed while I got up to turn the light off. (Who was I kidding telling a baby to stay in bed like she was going to listen.) During this time, the Lion King was playing on the tv screen. It was right before the sunrise came, so it was dark in the room. Well, my daughter decided to crawl to me, I’m guessing, and she crawled off of the bed and fell.
She started to cry, so I am assuming this is like the typical story where you hear of a child falling off the bed and is more startled than in pain. I held her looked at her. She seemed fine, and she ended up falling asleep halfway through the movie. The following day as I was getting ready to go to work. I had seen that she had woken up, and just like any morning when she does this, I was excited. (Personally, I loved when my baby woke up with me, that meant I could kiss her and hold her while getting ready for work.)
As I did every morning, I told her to crawl to me, and that’s when I noticed and immediately got upset. My child was limping, so to speak. She didn’t cry, but you could tell she was hurt. All I could say to myself was that I was a bad mother, and it was all my fault while holding my baby close. Once I was calm, I woke up my boyfriend to tell him that we needed to go to the hospital.
Hospital for Kids
On our way to the hospital and while waiting in the waiting room, she seemed fine. She was playing, and there was nothing out of the ordinary. I don’t know if you’ve ever been to a specific hospital for kids, but it’s very colorful and has many toys for kids to play with. The doctors looked at her, gave her toys to monitor how she would grab them, and told me she looked fine. Nothing appeared to be wrong with her. Annoyed, I said to them that there was something wrong with her and they needed to see what was wrong with my baby. So I told my baby to crawl to me, and she started to limp again. They decided to do X-rays to see if they could pinpoint exactly what was wrong. That’s when they determined that she had a small crack in her clavicle (collarbone). They told me that there is no reason for her to have a brace and it had to heal on its own.
I was relieved that we got our answers, but it only worsened my thoughts about how much of a bad mother I was. It took for someone to tell me that was not the case. What happened to my child was an accident. It happens to a lot of babies. What makes me a good mother is that I didn’t hesitate to speak up and give my child a voice. Even when everyone was telling me she was alright. This got me thinking what makes a good?
The Stigma of Bad Moms
Nowadays, you see everyone talking about the stigma of being a bad mom. They even got Bad Moms the movie. Go on Facebook right now and just scroll, or better yet, if you’re a part of a mom group, I bet you’ll find some post of a mother saying bad mom alert or something to that extent. The truth is everyone makes mistakes. There is not one perfect mother out there.
Beautiful Mama, you are enough. You are so much MORE than enough.-The Mindful Mamas App
To even feel the need to search for inspiration, shows that we are two things 1. constantly second-guessing ourselves as parents and 2. that we aren’t given enough credit. Either way, I feel like they both go hand and hand. As mothers, I feel like we do what is best for our children, and we wouldn’t knowingly put them in harm’s way.
The best practice for motherhood I find is that I lay down at the end of the night, and I think about all the mistakes in motherhood that I have possibly made earlier that day and what I could have done differently. The next day I try to implement those different thoughts and make even better decisions. No one has all of the answers, and not every solution is correct. Again, you have to do what you think is best for your children. That alone is what makes you a good mother.