We talked about this and that over the past year or so’s worth of posts. We’ve offered tips about how to deal, neigh, thrive during pregnancy. We have taken a good hard look at the history of midwifery — stemming from its ancient Egyptian and Grecian roots through the Middle Ages, making its way to America, narrowly missing North American extinction in the process. We’ve talked about our own Certified Midwife, Deanna D., and our breadth of midwife services our Certified Midwife and Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner offers here at the top prenatal clinic in the Tri-Cities.
We’ve had other blog topics over the past months, but this isn’t a recap of all our favorite posts kind of post, although that’s not a terrible idea. Rather, as this post’s title probably gave away, today’s post is dedicated to letting expectant mothers know how to be a good mom. Sounds pretty great, right? Of course it does! But before we get started, allow us a qualifier or two concerning the topic at hand.
We Are A Certified Midwife Clinic, Not An Official Authority On Parenting
As the subheading above points out, we don’t consider ourselves to be any sort of bastion of parenting, although the title does have a certain cachet to it that we can’t help but admire. More seriously though, there is no singular path that makes a “good mother,” or even a good parent for that matter. We can highlight some tips that experts have provided over the years, but at the end of the day, these are recommendations. Of course, there are plenty of ways that involve being a poor parent, but most all of those are self-evident and are likewise rooted in selfishness more than anything else. We will focus on habits of quality mothers in today’s post, so read on if that sparks your interest at all!
Before we dive headfirst into the meat and potatoes of today’s post (actually providing you with habits and tips), let’s open up with some encouragement. There is a good chance that you have everything you’ll need to be a great mother already around you and at your disposal. Well, disposal is a bit of a harsh word, seeing as how we are talking about real people you’ll be needing to rely upon for your support group. Having a partner and your parents around is an amazing plus, but it isn’t absolutely necessary for the little one to have a good life (the same goes for you). It’s a much better thing if you are able to find friends and/or family that can help you as the newborn becomes a baby who becomes a toddler who becomes a child.
That being said, you are strong, capable, and have a long lineage of successful parenting attempts to look back upon. Seriously, go ahead and think about it. If any one of your past mothers had been unsuccessful, you wouldn’t be walking around on this planet. All of that success is in your blood, so don’t worry — you got this!
Habits Worth Emulating: Accepting The Challenge Before You
Let’s start with a fundamental mindset every mother needs to have before they do anything else. Accepting that after you have your child is when the hard work begins is vital. And while we don’t mean to say that it’s going to be a miserable experience by any means (because it’s quite possibly the greatest joy that any person can experience on this planet), you certainly have your fair share of discomforts to look forward to. Waking up in the middle of the night, not having any semblance of a social life, saying goodbye to your pre-pregnancy body for a while, decades of financial support, the child inevitably rebelling for what seems like a very long time — it’s a lot to think about if you let your mind wander.
Back to our point! Becoming a parent means you take the bad with the good, but the good parents are almost always able to accept reality for what it is. The more quickly you are able to stare down the difficult parts, the more joyful the abundance of happy moments will be!
“What If I Don’t Feel Especially Maternal?”
For one thing, if you are worried about how good of a mother you’ll be, that’s completely natural. It’s also a categorically maternal feeling to worry about yourself not being sufficiently maternal, as strange as it may seem. Likewise, being a good mom doesn’t mean you’ve obsessed over every single baby you’ve seen in the past year, and neither does it mean you’ll be filled with unspeakable hormonal joy everytime you lay eyes on your own baby!
Elyse Rubenstein, a psychiatrist based in Philadelphia who works closely with new mothers, had this to say on the topic: “You don’t have to be the type who fawns over babies…I was not a baby person. I never pictured myself having three kids, which I now do…Until you have your own, you really don’t know what you’ll be like,” she says. “But once you have a baby, the maternal instinct just kicks in.”
Dr. Rubenstein goes on to touch on similar points we’ve made above, in addition to speaking about how every mother gain confidence with experience.
No Two Children Are Alike, So Trust Yourself
It might sound strange to say, but there will be plenty of times where you need to ignore what your own mother (or even conventional wisdom) might say, because mother knows best about a given situation. We aren’t giving you a free pass to do whatever you want and never listen to anybody again, we’re just saying that you will know your own kid better than anyone else. Listen to the advice of those that you respect who are in your life, but don’t be afraid to trust yourself. Times change from when your mother raised you and when she was a child. But there are things you can do that will bond yourself with your child no matter what era you are living in:
- Listen to your child. Stop what you are doing, and listen to what they mean, even if they can’t quite get the words out right yet.
- Be an active mother — involve yourself in their lives. Watch out for how they interact with other people, whether it’s other children or adults.
- Being a good parent doesn’t stop when they get potty-trained and are able to read and write. Keep educating yourself as best you can.
Reach out to us at Deanna D. Midwifery to schedule your consultation today. We’d love to get to know you and see how we can fit into the bigger picture of your motherhood and new life!