Thursday, September 2, 2010

being The Momma

There's one aspect of motherhood that I had no idea would be as hard for me as it has been: telling other parents (especially other mothers) "No" when it comes to Daniel. I'm not exactly sure why this has been so hard for me—and it's getting easier with time and practice—but I wonder if it has something to do with age. I'm not used to telling my mother (for instance) what is and isn't ok to do. Rather, I'm used to it being the other way around. This shift in who's in charge has been such an interesting thing to experience.

Something that's made it a whole lot easier all around is that most of the people I've interacted with in this way not only completely respect the request I've made of them, but they remember what it's like to be the mother (parent) of a new baby. They remember how it feels to have someone do something you don't want them to do to your child, and then to have to tell them that it's not alright.

The thing that has often happened in these situations is that I feel compelled to apologize after I set a boundary with someone in this way. (For instance, when I told someone she couldn't hold Daniel at Jaymz's office party—there were too many people there and I didn't want to have to say 'yes' to some and 'no' to others.) I appreciate when someone asks, "Is that ok with you?" before they touch or do anything to Daniel. I am also so grateful for the other mothers in my life who have graciously accepted my suggestions and reassured me when I apologize for it by saying some variation of, "No, please don't be sorry. You are his mother. You get to decide."

And they're right. I'm The Momma now. I think I'm getting better at it each day.

What transitions in your life have been difficult in surprising and unexpected ways? How have you managed the ups and downs of those kinds of situations? I'd love to learn from your experiences!

1 comment:

  1. I definitely struggle with this as well. I'm not sure what things to let go of and what things to stand firm on. I find as my daughter gets older, I relax a little, but there's still times that I cringe and feel I should have said something. I suppose, like you, I'll gain more confidence with time, but man, is it hard! Thanks for this post!


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