Meet the Sullivans: Build 'Em Up: Being Confident in Motherhood

May 21, 2013

Build 'Em Up: Being Confident in Motherhood

This post is a part of the Build 'Em Up series being hosted by Erin (from Blue-Eyed Bride), Kelly (from Kelly’s Korner), Jennifer (from Life in the Green House) and Courtney (from Lil Light O’ Mine). Each week the ladies invite other women to share their story on a certain topic. The point is for us to share our story, but also to encourage others through our own experiences.  I read these women's blogs daily and I have really been enjoying every topic in this series.

This is the first time I'm particiapting in this link up only because I've felt a little shy about voicing my thoughts like this. 

This week's topic is Being Confident in Motherhood, even though we all "mother" differently.

Confidence in motherhood is having peace with your decisions, big and small. 

I think I've talked about this before, but I'd like to shed light on it again. When we first had Owen I had some serious bouts of mommy-anxiety. I worried so much about being able to live up to being the kind of mother I'd always dreamed of being, and what other people would think if they witnessed me not being the perfect mother I thought I'd be. I thought having confidence in being a mom would come easily to me, but it took time.

There is so much expectation and judgement in motheirng. We judge oursleves, which is the biggest issue, but we're also judged by our closest friends and people we don't even know for our parenting styles. Formula or breastfeeding. Staying at home or returning to work. Cry it out or rock them to sleep. These are just some of the many issues we deal with in just the first few months of a child's life, and this list just grows larger as the sweet child does.

It was difficult in the beginning to not let comments or my own anxieties get the best of me. I was a brand new mom. Every day was a scary and new adventure. I probably looked like a deer in the headlights most of the time back in those days. We had no clue what we were doing (that might be a bit of an exaggeration), so when someone suggested we were doing it the wrong way it really affected us.

Whenever someone (often an stranger) would offer me advice, the question would always beg; who was I to say that I really knew best? That is what I would think every time someone would offer me their best advice, etc. But the honest answer to that statement is that I DID know best, and I still do, because I am his mother, and my decisions are made from the heart. To me it is as simple as that.

This deep seeded confidence takes time. It takes some failures, some falling flat on your face and some trial and error--but mainly it just takes time to learn that it is okay to make the choices you think are best, even if others don't agree.

I don't want to say reject what everyone else says or does, because you always know best, because that is not the case. I have learned so much of what I know about mothering from my own mom, watching other moms in my family, seeing friends become moms and most importantly, being a mom with other women by my side. When I'm unsure of what to do the advice and experience of the moms around me is invaluably --but the decision is always mine (and Keith's, of course).


Emily said...

Wonderfully said, and I couldn't agree more! "I am his mother, and my decisions are made from the heart." -Love that statement.

Whitney @ Work it Mommy said...

Yes! All your words ring true! Well said.

Marissa said...

Enjoyed reading your post via the link up. Couldn't agree more! Thanks for sharing!