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Open Letter To New Moms

Twelve years ago, when I was pregnant with my first child, I remember standing in the Starbucks line waiting for my cappuccino.

A mom with a baby in a stroller leaned over and said, “You know, caffeine isn’t good for the baby.”

I was floored!

I couldn’t believe she had the nerve; but I soon found out that this was just the beginning of the judging and guilt trips that moms lay on each other.

When I went home and told my husband what happened, I was still fuming.

“What I SHOULD have said to her was, ‘Yeah, I know. But it’s the only thing that helps my killer hangover.’”

Haha, JOKING! No hangover, I promise. I wasn’t able to give up coffee, but I did give up alcohol for my pregnancies.

Anyway, like I said, this was just the beginning.

For example, I had a terrible time breastfeeding my first son. I was really struggling, and was looking online for advice and answers.

Want to make yourself feel like a TERRIBLE mother in a hurry?

Go to an online mom’s forum and say something about how you’re thinking about starting your baby on formula.

I can almost guarantee you’ll get other moms telling you that you should have your baby TAKEN AWAY FROM YOU for even considering using formula.

So listen up, new moms, because I’m about to lay my version of the truth on you.

Whether you use cloth or disposable diapers does not matter to your kids.

You know what does?

Whether you take 5 minutes out of your day to play a game of hide and seek with them.

Your kids don’t care if you feed them free-range, organic chicken nuggets, or the scary fast-food ones dipped in honey.

They care about sitting around the table while they eat those chicken nuggets and having you listen to their stories.

Your kids are not going to remember if you forced them to listen to Mozart as babies… or if you plopped them down in front of the TV and let them watch “The Backyardigans.”

They’re going to remember the trust and memories you took the time to build with them.

And THAT’S what matters most.

Nobody else in this world is going to be the Mom to your children that you are going to be.

You love your kids in a way that no other Mom will, no matter HOW low another Mom tries to make you feel for your choices.

Are you going to make mistakes?


Are you going to feel horrible for those mistakes?

Most likely.

But NO ONE ever gets this parenting thing 100% right. Not you, certainly not me, not your critics, not any other Mom.

We are all on this learning curve called “being human” and here’s the secret:

None of us ever “arrive” to a point where we stop second guessing ourselves or parent without making mistakes.

In fact, just last night I was telling my daughter right before bed that if she didn’t take good care of her braces, her teeth could become permanently stained for life.

Of course, minutes later she came out crying and it took me half an hour to calm her down.

After she went back to bed, I said to myself, “What a dummy you are. Why would you say that to her right before bed??”

Big mistake…

So the next time you walk away from a conversation feeling dejected for not meeting another mommy’s standard… go home and love your kids.

Hug them. Play with them. Talk to them. Teach them something new.

Tomorrow is not promised… and time with your little ones flies away before you know it.

Focus on what matters.

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Dana’s Sleep Blog

Straight talk about sleep, parenting,
babies, toddlers, relationships… and
just about anything else!
My blog is a great place to find opinions, advice, the occasional rant, and some great videos about sleep.

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