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Finding Confidence

Categories: babies, miscellaneous, parenting, postpartum

October 9, 2013

author: Jeanette Mesite Frem

She was sitting on the couch during school vacation week and complaining that she was bored. My husband went through a list of things she could do (besides watch TV or play video games). She wasn’t interested. He said something like, “so you’re just going to sit there like a lump?” In a split second, as if she had known all along what she was going to say, she said,

“Yeah, a lump of awesomeness!”

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we all could stay in that development stage–the one where we know we are awesome? She knows she is smart. Knows she is funny. Knows she’s is cute. Remember those years? Dig waaaayyy back. No, even before that. Right…theeerrre. When you were innocent and little (and if you were lucky, had parents or someone else in your life that allowed you to bask in your awesomeness).

I’ve listened to thousands of women in my life over the years talk about self-doubt. The big one during pregnancy is “am I going to be able to push this baby out?” The big one after the baby is born is “will I be able to successfully breastfeed?” And then it just continues…for years…”am I a good mother?”

The answer to those questions isn’t always yes. Some babies need to come out another way*. Some women get all they help possible and still can’t breastfeed. And even still, some mothers just aren’t good mothers.

BUT, a big but (and I like…big buts and I cannot lie…cue music now)

Most of us CAN push a baby out.
Most of us CAN successfully breastfeed.
Most of us ARE good mothers.
BUT (there it is again), in order to do that we need to ask for help.

In most of the world (and even “back in the day” in this country) a new mother would have help all around her. Today, some moms are fortunate and have a loving and proactive partner to help. Some parents have their mothers or fathers around to help. Others can’t tolerate their parents coming around critique them (ahem, I mean “help”). Some have neighbors. But wait, what about doctors, nurses, midwives, doulas, breastfeeding counselors, mental health providers? Yes, they are there to help, too. Like any profession, some suck and some are awesome.

Unfortunately, what I hear is that many moms aren’t reaching out for that help, professional or not. They just hang out at home struggling on their own.

NOT feeling like a lump of awesomeness.

Can you help by making a commitment today to
a) remember you are a lump of awesomeness
b) remind a mom or dad that they are awesome
c) write a note to the non-awesome people (professional or otherwise) telling them how they can improve to one day be considered awesome, and
d) write a note thank the awesome professionals out there for being awesome, and
e) remind yourself, again, that you are awesome.

You is smart. You is kind. You is important.
~ The Help (motion picture), 2012

Got it? Awesome.

*Don’t get me started on the high Cesarean rate–many of the babies born via surgery these days didn’t need to come out that way. That’s a whole other blog post.

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