Saturday, August 15, 2009

You're Going to Judge Me

After reading this posting you will official label me as "Bad Mom"...or at least bad future mom!! So, I finally had my meltdown today. It's been building for weeks although I really didn't realize a meltdown had been brewing until about three days ago. I've confessed my deepest secret to Daniel so I suppose I can share with you all (i.e. whoever reads this)...he didn't judge me. He only laughed. I realize some of you will judge me for what I'm about to write but I have to say this, put this out there and just get it off my chest!

Start judgement here:
Basically, I have no idea what to do with this baby we are expecting. I don't mean I'm the sort of future mom who is nervous because she's just not clear on how she'll handle it all and such. I'm saying I feel a distinct lack of maternal instinct at this point. What do you do with a baby?? What SPECIFICALLY do you do with a baby?? I need a specific, minute by minute, week by week guide or else I'm sure I'm going to fail at this!! (Remember, my degree involves dealing with high school age kids!) I must be clear that I love this baby. I love him/her so much. I know I have love and caring to give a baby but aren't there other things I should have instincts about besides just loving the little one?? I have HUGE doubts about my actual parenting abilities.

Continue judgement here:
I told Daniel...and here comes the confession that will shock you...I keep having these visions and dreams about my inability to care for the baby. More specifically, see myself just sort of picking it up by it's ankle or arm like you'd grab a doll when cleaning up your bedroom as a child and just holding it out and saying, "What do I do now?" or "Tell me! What do I do with it?" I am unable to clearly see myself nursing the baby, playing with the baby, bathing the baby, etc. All I see when I imagine myself caring for our future child is that horrible image of me holding it by it's little baby ankle.***

This is when I felt relief that at least my husband isn't judging:
When I was laying there in the bed sobbing over this problem...once I'd spilled my guts, Daniel just started to laugh. He insisted I wouldn't do that and that maternal instinct would take over. I tried to explain to him that that answer just wouldn't suffice. Then he said something so revealing: "Robin, there's no book about how to be a good parent."

My response, "Well there should be!!!" I go to books for everything. I've already read three pregnancy books and one book about what to do when baby arrives...the "when baby arrives" book is NOT helpful. I want something to say EXACTLY what will happen and EXACTLY when it happens so I can be 100% prepared.

Of Daniel sort of caused me to realize today, that's not possible. And that revelation was shocking to me. How did I not know this??

Any advice is welcome although I think if I read/hear "You'll figure it out, I promise" one more time I might die. I haven't figured it out yet and I'd sort of like to have a general idea (ok, as specific an idea as possible) before baby gets here.

And yes, I'll also be talking to my OB about this when I see her this week!!!

***I should clarify that I know that's not how I hold a baby. I know better than to hold a baby the way in which I described. In case you're worried, I won't be holding my baby that way. I just needed to describe my problem here.***


Ana said...

Let me just be one that will tell you the truth.. there will be MORE than one time where you will wonder what you are doing and why you had a baby to begin with. Totally normal (anyone who says different is a liar and a cheat). I remember my first night with Logan and I thought, "what have I gotten myself into!".. I felt terrible that something that we had waited SO LONG to happen had finally happened and I was BUMMED and frustrated! Take any and all advice and throw what doesn't work for you out the window. One book that I LOVE LOVE LOVE and could never do without is "Babywise"... I think the real title is "On Becoming Babywise". It's AWESOME and it actually kind of does tell you what to do minute by minute, hour by hour. It's been a lifesaver for me when the babies were young.. all of my kids were sleeping THROUGH THE NIGHT 10+ hours at 3 months... and they are all still pretty good sleepers (OK.. Logan excluded, but I think that's a 4 year old thing). Anyway, I recommend that book.. and I urge you to read it with Daniel and commit TOGETHER to do x.y.z.... OH.. and the first few weeks, you will just sleep when baby sleeps.. NO MATTER WHAT... dishes be darned, showers can wait. That's my um.. 2 cents. Yeah, I was evil with that last comment. OH, and I asked Nick if he was excited to be a new uncle and he looked at me as if I had horns on my head... I thought that I had spilled the beans... then he came to and remembered. :) It was funny. End of book.

Tabb and Michelle said...

Okay...I'm just your mother in-law...but here's my advice: You remember what it was like to plan for the day you could finally drive a really couldn't practice until you got the permit. You could read about it, watch others, but it wasn't good enough until you finally got behind the wheel. Parenting is so like that: you really can't plan for the reality. You can buy all the gadgets, read all the books...but it's nothing compared to the reality. Each child is different, each day is and Daniel will be different. You just learn to go with the flow. Call friends, call family (ughh family) and rely on each other. It somehow all comes together. Your family will be silently there for you (that's my promise to you, but I can't control Tabb).... you just raise the white flag when you need us. You and Daniel will be amazing and loving parents.

Teresa said...

It's called giving up control ... something you're going to have to learn to do. There are enough loving people surrounding you who won't let you fail. So relax, try to enjoy your pregnancy (as much as you can when you're feeling green) & get lots of sleep NOW because (as Ginnie can attest), it'll be a long time before you sleep late again!