Paying It Forward

If anyone would have told me. 4 years ago, that in just a few short years I would be blogging the joys of motherhood, I would have called her a liar.  I would have said, first "what joys" and two "who the hell would read it?".  Somehow I'm here letting it all hang out.  I would have also called you a liar or crazy if you would have also suggested that another mother would actually ask for my opinion or expertise.  Well guess what?  Someone has asked.  A mom and fellow reader has actually asked for my advice.  I didn't believe it myself.

This mom sent me a message months ago that brought tears to my eyes.  She was thanking me for being honest and letting her know that sometimes motherhood was about as fun as a triple root canal.  She was in that place between selfless mommy and guilt ridden, run for the hills, where the hell is my former life mom.  I got it.  I had actually just blogged about it.  She thanked me for hating breast feeding, hating night time feedings, and hating fatigue.  She thanked me for opening a door she didn't know existed.  The "I love by baby, but this motherhood thing is a bitch" door.  She told me about her own feelings, her own fatigue and her own self loathing.  I just read her message and cried.

I cried because I knew exactly where she was.  I cried because I wanted her to know and understand that she was not alone.  I cried because she reminded me of me, four years prior.  Tears of gratitude that someone actually enjoyed and related to what I had felt and then written.  Tears of selfishness, I had a fan!

We messaged back and forth.  She said that she had been following the blog for awhile but was too afraid to comment.  I did my best to listen and respond to her fears and mothering aspirations.  I wanted her to feel comfortable and know that no matter her comment, her message or her post, this was a safe place. 

Time went on and recently she messaged me again.  This time for advice.  Advice?  ME?  Seriously?  What do I know about schedules and baby menus, and weaning from a bottle?  Really she just wanted to know my opinion.  So I told her.  I told her what a very wise mom told me four short years ago. 

YOU gotta do what works for YOU. 

So I let her know the lessons I had to learn the hard way.  That no one, NO ONE, knows your baby better than you do.  That it's ok to do your momma thing your way to make it easier on you.  That no one can tell your child sleeps with you unless they are there at bed time.  No one will know that your kid eats peanut butter cups for breakfast unless you tell them. 

I hoped that I had put her mind at ease a little.  I was happy to help.  Are you kidding, I just love to talk about this momma gig I got and what I do to make it work.  I swear it's like Tim Gunn's voice in my head, "Make it work Mommas, Make. It. Work".  Then when you think you're working it, you notice the snot on your sleeve.  Work it.

I mentioned this moment to my friend Krysten during one of our morning chats (more on those later).  Of course she knew the actual reason and meaning behind my moment with this mom.

It's like paying it forward.  You know, she is you 4 years ago.  I helped you get right with it and now you are helping her get right with it.  Full Circle.  You know?
- ok so this isn't a direct quote but you get the picture.

MIND.  BLOWN.  It was exactly like paying it forward.  DUH!  And I was so happy to have come full circle I wasn't even jealous that Krysten had the insight to notice. 

I asked this Mom if I could blog about her. She said yes and was excited.  I appreciated that, and was thankful for the chance to share our story.  One day I hope this mom will do me the honor and blog her story here.  Until then, I happy to have a new Momma in the club of Moms who really do love their children, but would sometimes trade them in for Starbucks.  And if you say "NEVER" then I have to call you a liar.  LIAR.

Happy Blogging,

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