Unity Media Group

The Digest | March/April 2016

The Digest | New Jersey Magazine

Issue link: https://magazines.vuenj.com/i/652023

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Page 62 of 83

PARENTING You are human. And along with being human comes imperfections and flaws that figure themselves out through trial and error every single day. S ince many of us were little girls, we dreamed of being a mommy. Personally, I would practice for hours caring for my baby dolls by feeding them, brushing their hair, cuddling them and protecting them from my annoying sibling. I had baby names picked out since before I even hit puberty. All of those hours romanticizing led to expectations of one day being the perfect mom. We had so many opinions on how to parent long before we had children. Let's be real, we've all witnessed someone else's children acting up and thought to ourselves how we'd do things differently. Parenting looked so easy before we became parents. I remember those judgmental thoughts that would pop into my head about a mom out in public whose kids were out of control. That would never be me. Right? And then I actually had kids. Expectations not matching up to reality start early. After all, look at all the celebrity moms with adorable little baby bumps that become runway ready after what seems like no time at all. The increase in bra size and an excuse to eat more because it is "for the baby" seems like a dream come true. That is until the hemorrhoids, leg cramps, and bra burn started to happen. Yes, bra burn. It happened to me. The last month or so of pregnancy I was tortured by the pain that came from the rubbing of my underwire bra between my baby belly and my breasts. I could not wait to get home from work every day to take off my bra just to be able to breathe. I definitely did not expect that to happen! So now you are a mom. Expectations of rainbows, sunshine and puppy dogs right? Your baby sleeps, eats and poops on a beautiful schedule. Well, at least that's what all the books say. You nap when the baby naps and you have all the time in the world to cuddle and nurture and savor the early months of bonding. All of that is there, you will have beautiful moments of bonding and bliss for sure, but let us not forget the spit up, dirty diapers, sleep deprivation and crying spells (you and the baby). The reality is, you are no longer in control. From the moment you get pregnant that baby has taken a priority in your life. Delusions of perfection fly right out the window and that leaves many of us with frustration, and well, mommy guilt. The good news is you're not alone. Even better news; perfection is not the answer. The reality is so much more interesting than the expectation. You are human. And along with being human comes imperfections and flaws that figure themselves out through trial and error every single day. March | April 2016 63

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