I have always known that I’m not the most secure person in the world. I may appear pretty confident but I’m one of those people who can dish it out but who really can’t take it! Parenting, however, has really brought to surface my insecurities!
It all started during delivery. I was laying on the table pushing longer than most people push with NO drugs yet I felt so embarrassed. I kept saying, “I suck at this don’t I?” And asking, “Am I doing it right?” Why was I so insecure? I did a great job!
The self doubt didn’t start there. I don’t think I did much of anything with my baby the first week without asking someone what to do. Remember I didn’t even change his diaper the first six days? I know with breastfeeding I wanted Zach in the room every time to help me get Kye to latch on and make sure I was doing it right! Ridiculous! But still, that was me.
Before Kye was born Zach and I were hardcore that we weren’t going to let people tell us how to parent our baby. We’ve seen other people give opinions and tell Courtney what to do with Colt and we didn’t like that. We wanted to figure it all out on our own (typical independent us!) and refused to let anyone get in the way of that.
Zach did a great job once Kye was born! I remember when we left the hospital and Kye was crying in his car seat and Mrs. Charlotte and Mom made some comments or suggestions on what to do and Zach said to them, “quit telling me how to parent my child.” He’s only been a dad for 24 hours and already he was confident!!! I’ve been the EXACT opposite. I realized that I’ve let everyone tell me their opinions and dictate how I take care of my baby!
I don’t blame Mrs. Charlotte or Mom or the doctors. I blame myself. I should be confident enough in my own parenting to say, “no, this is how I do it.” When Mom visited for her Spring Break is when my light bulb finally went off and I realized what I’ve been doing! She would naturally say, “I think he has a dirty diaper.” And I’d freak out inside thinking my mom would think I’m a bad mother because we don’t change his diaper the second it’s dirty. When he spit up and some got on his clothes and she changed his outfit I knew we don’t change his outfit if he just spits up a little on it but I didn’t say anything because I didn’t want her to think I was a bad mom leaving my kid in dirty clothes. I figure she’s been a mom for almost 25 years…doesn’t she know better than I do after only a month?
The bottom line is Kye is MY child, no one elses. Zach and I know how to parent him better than anyone else does even if they have parented forever or are professionals! When I first took Kye to the dr. I was SO nervous to change his diaper in front of them…or even HOLD him in front of them for fear that they would judge me! When I went to the hospital to see the lactation lady I was sooo nervous for her to see me nurse for fear that I was doing it wrong! When my GUT told me that my breast issue has to do with Kye having thrush and passing the yeast back to me I took him to the dr but when they told me he didn’t have symptoms I didn’t speak up. I didn’t tell them that sometimes the baby may not show symptoms. I didn’t do anything. I just left unsatisfied!
I believe that everything happens for a reason and that through every bad experience we can learn something and grow in some way. My breastfeeding problems was what I needed to FINALLY stand up and say, “I AM A GOOD MOM!” I was so frustrated after leaving his dr. and them saying he didn’t have thrush. I was even more frustrated leaving my dr. and being told I didn’t have yeast. After seeing the lactation lady it all clicked and I realized all of this insecurity has to stop. I know my body. I know my baby. I KNOW more than anyone else what is BEST!
It was then that I called his dr. and told them that I don’t care that he doesn’t have symptoms, I want to try thrush meds and see what happens. It was then that I talked to Stacy and told her even though her gut says I don’t have yeast that I have to trust my gut and give the yeast meds one more shot. It was then that I apologized to both Mom and Mrs. Charlotte and told them that I have been too afraid to parent in front of them the way I should be and that it was going to change.
Before Zach left for his business trip last week, I can admit that he was probably more the “mom” than I was. I trusted his every idea and his every plan of action for Kye. I put my own gut instinct aside I did what he thought was best. While he was away on business I learned that I have the abilities to be a great parent! I did AWESOME on my own! Kye had great naps, he slept wonderfully at night, and I totally came up with his routine and schedule ON MY OWN!!!!
When Zach came home he came back to a new Emily! A Emily who said, “this is how we do this with the baby.” I think he liked to see a more confident me and I think he appreciated me finally stepping up to my parenting role. I feel so so so much better about myself now! Would I say my insecurities are gone? No! They are still there! But I am able to put them aside and make them a little whisper in my head and allow my natural motherly instinct, my gut, to yell strong and lead the way!