Natural Mother

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I'm just not one of them.

Maybe I over think things. Maybe it's the migraines. But all this mothering stuff, even if I can do it well, doesn't come naturally to me. Even if it appears so. Even if you think I am because I stay at home, or nurse or whatever. It doesn't come naturally.

I see other mothers make decisions to just keep having children, or get up at all hours of the night for long periods of time, or whatever, and I just think, "nope. I don't have it in me."

[Editor's note: this is where my mother would chime in: "Mara, you are comparing your insides to other people's outsides."]

I know. In fact, one of the 'outsides' I am comparing myself is to my mother. Four?! Four children?! Dear lord in the heavens above, how does anyone ever manage that?! I... I ... I'm speechless.

Frankly, it's a little amazing to me that anyone EVER decides to have even a second child. In fact, I am in awe that humanity continues to exist and that one generation simply didn't say, umm, heck no! Thanks, but no thanks!

So, if you ask me how motherhood is treating me, and I stumble? This is what's running through my head (simultaneously with a "what's an acceptable response?").

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I am pretty sure every first time mother says the same thing.
I am pretty sure every two time mother says the same thing.
In fact I'd bet each third time mother does too.
After that one has help from the first three children.
If papa is worth his salt he's home all the time doing things for everybody too.
and when Mama wants to go play with friends, or be off doing things for self or family,
papa must be there for her too. Mother's who do this all alone would be the world's biggest heroes.

I cannot agree with you more. It is staggering that the earth was populated this way. It seems so extraordinary, how could it be that so many people have done this and keep doing this. Mothers get so much blame for messing everybody up, but really just to keep their children alive until they can feed themselves is enough for us all to throw ourselves thankfully at their feet, let alone teaching them to clip their nails and say please and thank you. I'm getting incoherent, but I know you know what I mean.

Hehe. I loved the post and your honesty. It makes me feel less crazy-like for my lack of desire for motherhood. Also, I really like your Mommyism. I don't know that I've heard her say that before, and I really, really like it. Thanks for sharing.

mara, you're wonderful

(i wrote a few comments, then deleted them, this is what i settled for, this one is what i really wanted to say)

Mommy never claimed to be a natural mother. She just had a lot of practice. Besides, take a deep breath and let go. There's a pretty solid theory about the "good enough mother" that actually views your failings and shortcomings developmental necessities for your child to be able to explore the world and learn to overcome challenges for which he cannot turn to you for help.

Sashwee, I'm totally with you (and the nail cutting? one of my least favorite things about parenthood. period).

Everyone else, thank you.

(to Mensch, how's the "take a deep breath and let go" working out for you?)

I saw this on another post and it made me smile

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This page contains a single entry by Mara published on May 3, 2008 6:01 PM.

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