Motherhood inferiority complex.

More than once I’ve been told I’m a pretty laid-back first-time mom. I think when I got pregnant, I became so overwhelmed with the sheer magnitude of what I was about to do and I kinda just let go of trying to even attempt to control the situation. I’ve just been able to take one day at a time, knowing that I’m in a powerful yet powerless position here.

And for the past ten months, I’ve been pretty much proven right. Being laid-back has been a great tool for dealing with new-mommy life.

I think, however, my metapelet may disagree. It could be all my own internalizing, but I can’t help but get the feeling she wonders where my head is at… Why am I not taking all of her advice? Why am I not rushing to the doctor every time he has a string of sleepless nights (every week, then?!)? Why am I not more upset that when I drop him off, he’s ecstatic to jump into her arms from mine?

On that last point… It really didn’t bother me until she started mentioning it every time. I’ve been happy with the way she is with him, pleased with the fact that I landed a  great daycare situation – a loving woman who genuinely cares for my kid. So what’s wrong with the fact that when we get to her house in the morning, he practically jumps out of my arms into hers?

But she’s mentioned it almost every day and somewhere it started grating on my nerves. How many times can you hear, That’s not nice, don’t you love your mama? before you start to shed your laid-backness and begin to get annoyed?

This week was different. I don’t know if Koala is just getting older, more aware, more contextual, or if Purim turned things upside down for real… But when I brought him in on Tuesday, he freaked out. He grasped on to me and the nail-digging in my skin was oozing with please don’t leave me. I laughed and tried again to pass him along to his metapelet and he burst out in tears. Finally, I kissed his head and just left.

It happened again the next day. When I came to pick him up in the afternoon, my metapelet said, “Well, finally, I was worried that he was leaving you too easily. This is a good thing,” with just the slightest hint of defensiveness. In my head, I rolled my mind’s eyes. Who’s this really about, anyway?

But I’m happy with myself. Another version of me would have been angry, jealous, emotional, put off, defensive about the whole thing.

Laid-back mommy me is just taking it one day at a time.






4 responses to “Motherhood inferiority complex.”

  1. Gil Reich Avatar

    Some people get very annoyed, self righteous, and angry when they’re around people who don’t overreact to everything. Sure, you have to frequently ask yourself “should I be doing more?” But I agree with you completely. Being calm, not needing to be in the center of everything, enjoying that your kid wants to go to the metapelet, etc., is the best way to live, for yourself, for your son, and for the other people you’re around.

  2. Gil Reich Avatar

    Yeah, sorry to stalk you.
    Just read this:
    Bronson and Merryman [in NurtureShock: New Thinking About Children] slay a slew of myths. But perhaps the soundest advice for parents is: Lighten up. People have been raising children for approximately as long as there have been people. Only recently — about five minutes ago, relative to the long-running human comedy — have parents been driving themselves to distraction by taking too seriously the idea that “as the twig is bent the tree’s inclined.” Twigs are not limitlessly bendable; trees will be what they will be.
    (I think he overstates it, but I agree with the idea).

  3. elie Avatar

    thanks, I appreciate it (and the stalking).

  4. Raizy Avatar

    Oh, puleeeze! Babysitters like that drive me nuts. No matter what she thinks, she is not the expert on your baby, YOU are the expert on your baby. Please tell me that you are going to ignore every patronizing unhelpful comment that she makes and just continue to parent your child the way that you feel is best. (and BTW, I totally agree with you: laid back is good).

Whadya got: