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On Motherhood and Comparison

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I've been thinking a lot about mothering in the age of social media. There are benefits to having a vast pool of practical advice and opinion available at the quick stroke of the keyboard.

Even though there are helpful elements, I often feel that too much information can be debilitating, especially when it leads to comparison. When my mother was raising my brothers and I in the 80s and 90s she didn't have sleep-training websites or smart phone apps. She relied on instinct and her pediatrician. She also didn't worry about creating a Pinterest worthy home.

While researching feeding and sleep schedules, I started to feel pressure. Pressure to magically have Phoenix assimilate into our lives without a fuss. And of course the pressure for him to sleep through the night. What happens when our babies don't adhere to a certain philosophy? Have we failed? What happens when we don't meet societal expectations?

My mom nursed me into toddlerhood and I didn't sleep through the night, in my own bed, until I was five. Eventually, I grew to be a self-sufficient child that had no problems being away from my parents. Maybe moms have aways discussed their babies sleep patterns amongst themselves, but I don't believe it is the same as we do today.

It's extremely easy to get caught up in the comparison game. I am reminding myself daily that it'll be okay. I can read every baby/parenting philosophy book and forum, but ultimately Phoenix is a unique individual. So if you need a reminder...

It's okay if your baby...

Is not sleeping through the night.

Only lays in their crib when you're taking a photo.

Sleeps better when held, snuggled in a wrap or a swing.

Nurses to sleep at night.

It's also okay if you...

Aren't in your dream job.

Are currently single or feel conflicted in your relationship.

Lack direction.

Don't have the perfect capsule wardrobe.

Instead of wasting time comparing, I'm going to continue to snuggle Phoenix and look for joy in all aspects of life.

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