I am a perfectionist. I triple checked my assignments throughout my academic years. I rehearsed my presentations verbatim at least 30 times to ensure it was always my best. I will spend an hour testing each of 300 font styles in Microsoft Powerpoint to confirm that I have selected the perfect one. Naturally, when I learned I was about to become a mom, I knew I would be the perfect mom. I would have all the answers, make the perfect choices, and have the perfect little family. Of course, if you’re a mom (or any normal person for that matter) you would know that this is the most unrealistic plan anyone could imagine.
As I started my pregnancy, I connected with all the perfect moms I knew. I asked them what to put on my registry, which childbirth classes I should take, and asked about what books I should read to best prepare for childbirth and the first year of motherhood (in hindsight, I don’t think there’s anything currently out there that could really prepare you for either). My pregnancy was perfectly smooth. I had the beautiful future mom glow, received lots of loving attention, and didn’t have morning sickness. I was well on my way to have the perfect delivery.
That’s when my perfect little world took its first blow. I had a 24 hour induced labor that was far from what I had written in my birth plan. Then my perfect little baby had an infection and needed to spend the next 7 days in the NICU. I somehow felt responsible for not being able to protect my 1 day old baby from the world as the mommy guilt gene entered my life. Then my husband went straight back to work on the second day of our baby’s life when I had expected him to take two weeks off. Over the course of the first year of motherhood, my dream of having the perfect little family was never materialized. Everything I’ve experienced in my first year of motherhood took a toll on my physical well-being, emotional health, and my relationship with my husband. It’s not all bad, in fact, most of motherhood is more than I could hope for. My goal for this blog is to help you prepare for all the challenges that come up your first year so that it could be a happy, exciting time in your life. One of the most important gifts you can give your child is a happy marriage.
Despite all the things that went so wrong, I did learn that perfection was still something I could strive for. Just because I don’t accomplish what I set out to do doesn’t mean I can no longer be a perfect mom. When I started this blog, I initially thought I would name it, “Imperfect Mom.” But my husband immediately responded with, “all moms are perfect.” I liked the sound of that. And I think it’s true. No matter how many things go wrong, I will always be the perfect mother for my son. There will never be anyone else who loves him, cherishes him, and wants more for him that I do.
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