This is real life. Grungy t-shirt, pajama bottoms, messy hair, and a cranky baby. This is a real deal selfie. No Instagram filter here. Being a parent can be rough. It is not the waking up in the middle of the night to feed or doing loads upon loads of laundry when your baby keeps spitting up. It is the uncertainty. I do not know what the best thing for my child is 100% of the time. As a person who loves to plan and make fully informed decisions, this can drive me crazy! For example, I read several articles about the best blogging platform before I picked this one. I like having research to back up my decisions. I do not care to "just wing it." With parenting, there is not always a clearly superior decision. Everyone has their opinions and are quick to defend them (sidenote: DO NOT read the comments when looking up parenting or child rearing articles. You will get sucked into a blackhole of snarkiness). However, a lot the information that is out there is just that, someone's opinion. It can be difficult to know if you are getting the cold hard truth or if there is even a real "best" answer.
So how do you keep from becoming crippled by indecisiveness? Well, for me, it is a lot of seeking advice followed by naive confidence. The first person I turn to if I have parenting/baby related question is my mom. With five kids of her own, of which I am the oldest, it is likely that she has already encountered the problem I am faced with and knows a quick easy solution. It is wonderful having someone who I can talk to without being judged. Sadly, one the hardest parts about being a parent, especially a mom, is the loneliness. It may be just me, but does it seem like all young moms are in this sort of secret competition? I just get the feeling that I am being judged based on how well my baby seems to be doing at the time. It is probably just my own insecurities coming out but if anyone feels the same way, let me know. There is no need for moms, especially new ones, to be competing with each other. This whole having-a-new-baby thing is enough work on its own. There is no need to complicate it. That is why having someone who is older and wiser is so valuable. I trust my mom's advice not only because she is my mom and she has good judgement but because I know that she has dealt with pretty much every situation a parent can encounter. It is incredibly important to pull from those type of resources when making decisions.
The second thing that I fall back on is just pure naiveté. I realize that I do not know everything. I also realize that I am greatly lacking when it comes to experience. If I had to know everything right before making a decision, I would never decide on anything. Sometimes you have to just jump in and see what happens. I am confident in my instincts and trust the wisdom that I get from others. After that though, I just have to go with it. There are definitely a lot of "fake it till you make it" moments in parenting. I am hoping that it gets better with time. From what I can tell, it does.
For all of the ups and downs, I would not trade it for the world. I love my little baby even if he is covered in spit up and poop most of the time. It may not be pretty but it is pretty great.
For feel to comment and share thoughts or suggestions. I would ask that people refrain from negativity. Like I said before, let's not fall into a pattern of bashing on other people's choices.