Thursday, March 19, 2009

Public Vow

They say if you want to lose weight, quit smoking, or run a marathon the best way to fully commit is to publicly announce your intentions. That way you are doubly motivated- both for the goal itself and because you don't want to lose face. And you are supposed to get support from the people you tell. Anyway, Here is my public announcement-
I will never again attend a LLL meeting.

Now I consider myself pretty pro-breastfeeding. My weaned children got at least 2.5 years. No one ever had formula. I've been nursing the babies for 21 months now. But the LLL meetings are so depressing and I always leave feeling like the worst mother in the world. Being a parent can be so isolating, which makes no sense, since I'm always around other parents. But no one will let their guard down at a LLL meeting. Until I come along anyway!

They all need to one up the other. "My baby nurses all night long but I'm never tired." "My son is 18 months and has never tasted solid food but I don't mind. Why have children if you can't feed them properly?" "My kiddo is 4years 4 months but I'm not going to rush him into toilet learning. He'll learn when he is ready." "My baby is 4 months old and is fully in control of his elimination but it was his choice. He's never worn a diaper in his life."

Well, my kids are 21 months and I'm tired. They wear disposable diapers and eat more junk than I'd like to admit. I yell sometimes. They don't bathe as much as they should and neither do I. Sometimes they fight. Sometimes they are so incredibly compassionate I can barely stand it. Sometimes we just play outside (or inside) when we should be doing school work. They know they are loved. They know they have some responsibilities in this world. And shouldn't this be good enough?

I'm not sure why we have to pretend parenting is the easiest, most rewarding job around. Kids don't appreciate much, that is their nature. But why can't we admit it to other moms who should "get it." So don't go looking for me 'cause I won't be there. I'll be home. Tired, grubby and (mostly) content nursing my mismatched kids.


Uncle Larry said...

Absolutely H. like it says in the Bible(or somewhere) " Avoid zealots,they'll only drag you down".
All things in moderation is a better way to go. Keep up the good work !

Gram & Gramps said...

I sure think you are doing a good job. Maybe you speaking up like you just did others will also. I am so pleased with how Avery was on my last visit...That shows how well you are doing with the kids. Thanks for the care you give my grandchildren

Anonymous said...

I like your hat.


Natalie said...

BRAVO, BRAVO!! Oncore, Oncore. couldn't have said it better myself. I think the time I felt the worst about myself as a mother was listening to a LLL leader lecture me about how bad it was that Micah stopped nursing at 6 months. I refuse to ever be involved with them again. We do what we can and as long as our kids are loved we have succeeded.

Anonymous said...

Wait a minute...I loved LLL. I cried, and they all brought me food, for a long time! Heather, you should share this message with someone from that group. It might help them to be aware of how they sound.

Heather said...

I never said anything about the offical LLL people. The leaders seem fine. It is the people who attend. And I did cry. Twice. Once when Logan was about 8 months old. And now. About sleep.

The leaders seemed much more willing to discuss weaning "too early" when the mom just can't deal than the participants. I'm not bashing the leaders. I'm bashing the moms! :)

catherine said...

sooooooooo true!! I went to one meeting,left in the middle and never went back - and I was a cloth-diapering, co-sleeping, babywearing breastfeeding mama! But yeah, it was the moms one-upping each other on how perfect motherhood is that made me ill. Please,I'm exhausted, unwashed, lonely and overwhelmed. Could someone - anyone! make just one itty-bitty sarcastic comment about how much being a mother sucks sometimes??? Throw me a bone, people! (great blog!)