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Tuesday, March 12, 2013

I Was the Best Mom…


…before I had kids.

We were in Babies-R-Us, and she was a total stranger, likely in her third trimester. She and her husband were picking out more baby items that they didn’t yet know they would never need. I saw the judgment in her eyes as my four year old...
...repeatedly screamed for no reason. Duck behind the display, pop up and scream. Repeat. She and her husband exchanged nervous glances. They said nothing, but their exchange was clear, “Never will our child behave like this.”

I understood this exchange because less than five years ago, my husband and I silently spoke the same words. The horror in her eyes had been my horror. Her pledge had been my pledge.

As I reflect now, I knew nothing. I didn’t need half of what I shamelessly asked people to shower me with. (Why didn’t I ask for more diapers?) I didn’t realize the mother of “Princess Screams-For-No-Reason” was just trying to get out of the store. I didn’t know that instant macaroni and cheese was a completely reasonable dinner- four days in a row. I would take lots of pictures of the second child.

My children would sleep. My children would never be sick. I would breastfeed as if it were the most natural thing in the world to do and without difficulty. We would never plan things around junior’s naptime. Junior would adapt to our lifestyle and not the other way around.

I was an incredible mother- award worthy, actually- in the days before they were born.


Contributed by Beth Keeney, parent-writer for Today’s Family magazine.

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