I Am Good Enough: the first diaper
I never thought I would be a mom. Didn’t want to deal with all of that. Never sounded like any fun. I didn’t babysit as a teenager more than a handful of times (and it was terrifying!). In fact, my first job when I turned thirteen was with a realtor. I went to an office, made flyers for her clients’ sale houses, and did a lot of data entry. No kids there!
Then I met my future husband. The way he talked about his family, and the stories he told about growing up really captured me. It sounded like such a great time! The closeness he shares with his brothers and parents really is inspiring and it got me thinking. Well, maybe I might want to have a family some day? But it really would take the right timing and the right situation for me to see it.
We got married after a few years of friendship and a few years of growing up (separately). I still didn’t want to be a mom, but I really did want to have a family… with him… someday.
Fast forward 4 years… tons happened… I won’t bore you with the details right now. We went on an amazing vacation to Maui and finally talked, honestly talked, about kids. We had good jobs now and made good money, but we loved vacationing. No responsibilities, laying around on a beach for a week, what a life!
This would not be our lifestyle if we had kids. Luxurious beach vacations would turn into road trips and camping. That’s how the hubs grew up, and I could totally live with that. In fact, it even sounded like fun! I’m not a high maintenance chick, after all.
We decided to start “not preventing” in December 2013 and by Christmas we were preggo! I was still stuck in the “not a baby person” frame of mind and was honestly afraid of not wanting to be a mom. Everyone tells you it’s different when they’re your own, but I didn’t believe them. How could I enjoy being attached to a crying, smelly, needy thing?
When B was born, I remember being so incredibly scared. Scared that I wouldn’t be good enough. That I wouldn’t know how to love him. Or take care of him. Or raise him. Or even change his diaper.
The first night in the hospital after he was born was a game changer. Hospital rooms never get dark enough, and I can sleep if there’s any light on. I was laying awake in bed while the hubs was fast asleep on the fold out couch thing. I hear this tiny human in a plastic tub start to squeak a bit and my ears perked up. Would my lovely snoring hubby hear it?
The squeak got louder. OMG, what do I do? What does B need? The hubs isn’t moving. He’s still snoring. What do I do?!?!
I did what I needed to do. Not even knowing what that actually meant. But isn’t that what parenting is? Doing what you need to do.
I snagged that tiny human out of his plastic tub and laid him on the bed in front of me. Ok, I can change a diaper. I had watched my hubby do it a couple times, didn’t look that difficult.
Wipes… check. New diaper… check. Ready, set, go (yuk!)!
And I did it! I survived the first diaper. That tiny human needed me, and I was there for him. I looked around the room, waiting for the applause… it did not come.
I had just faced my fear and conquered it and nobody was there to witness it and congratulate me. Except for B. The tiny human I had grown for the last 9 months was there. He saw it. He knew what I had just done and how amazing it was. I held him close and he looked up at me and I melted.
I felt like a mom. I knew I loved him. I knew I could care for him. I would learn how to raise him. And I knew I was good enough.
I think the majority of us go through some self-doubt at some point raising our kids, right? But I think that doubt and concern proves exactly how good we are. We worry, which shows we care.
Almost three years and another kid later, I can’t imagine a life without them. It is different when they’re your own (thank goodness!).
Ok… some days I can imagine being on a beach with an umbrella drink in my hand. Then I snap back to reality when B’s arms wrap around my legs. He looks up at me and says “I wuv you mommy.” OMG, it melts me every time.