This focus reared it’s ugly head when my birth plan of a pretty, quiet, candlelit water-birth went all to hell, and I found myself getting a C-Section. It was a HUGE awakening which led to me starting to embrace the unpredictability of life with children.
I joined a mom and me group and realized there was a whole new realm to wound parenting.
- Suddenly, I was surrounded by other first-time parents who avoided disposable diapers like they would personally cause the demise of all landfill controls. (THE TREES, Julia, THINK OF THE TREES, THE TRUFULLA TREES!! Do you hate rainbows?)
- People shunned television like it boiled your brains, while I was hooked on the latest trial airing on HLN. (It’s wrong to watch Grey’s Anatomy with your toddler? It’s EDUCATIONAL! Don’t go out with McSteamy!!!!!!)
- They read no less than 39485749 parenting books, and I was uneducated because I hadn’t. (CIO CAUSES DETACHMENT AND SERIAL KILLERS!!)
- Formula was the devil, causing cancer, 6 toes and deformed eyeballs, while I broke out my Kirkland brand bottle. (YOU DON’T BUY DONOR BREASTMILK????)
- I gave my son cheerios, but ZOMG IT ISN’T ORGANIC!!!! (And not PRE-CHEWED????)
- They avoiding giving their children finger paint because the WHITE ONESIES WILL BE RUINED. (Not to mention SKIN CANCER!)
- “My child is the only kid not sitting up yet, she will be the only kid in college in a bumbo!!!” (Direct mommy quote from group. Thankfully, 90% in jest.)
Then I realized that my need for C’ing the FD was less apparent, a quiet and isolating one.
- I was nervous to take my son out (What if he misses his nap window?)
- I was concerned that he wasn’t saying any actual words at one (SPEECH THERAPY MUST BE NEEDED?!?!)
- I didn’t want anyone to come babysit, because my dog is kind of a jerk and likes to jump in the fountain.
- I hated having my mother up, because I felt I had to manage her, and also my son. (And good god, when will I have time to clean the guest bathroom?)
One day my husband sat down and told me “Julia, I don’t feel like I can invite my friends over, because I know how anxious you get… and it makes me sad.”
That was a light bulb moment for me. We sat down and had a very long talk about why I was so anxious in all areas of my life. It boiled down to one thought:
Relationships are messy. Parenting is messy.
I’m a mom who knows that at any point, Things Could Go Terribly, Horribly Wrong. Chances are, nothing I do (or don’t do) will scar my toddler for life. However, the absence of a moderately sane mom could cost me thousands in therapy bills.