me, Parenting

Why a mother’s job is the toughest…

I am a mother to a 4 year old and I can’t help but think everyday of my life that whoever coined the terms ‘terrible twos’, ‘troublesome threes’, ‘fearsome fours’ and beyond knew exactly what they were talking about 🙂 And needless to say, I dread the ‘frightening fives’ lurking around the corner.
Here’s what I feel. A mother’s job is the toughest because unlike any other job, mommies cannot give up. Mommies cannot give up and mommies cannot screw up. We do not get a second chance. We cannot go back and fix ‘it’. Ever. We cannot undo whatever’s been done. And when I look at all the people I have met and known in my life, there are really very few I would wish my kid to be like. There are frighteningly few that I think of as well-balanced, sensible human beings. That in itself is a challenge. To bring up a well-balanced, sensible, good human being 🙂 Those hand-full of people have had me set my standards way up there and I am struggling to get there.
But, what makes the job tougher, more challenging are the people around you. Your family. Your friends. Other mommies. Society in general.
Here’s what I believe. Contrary to what most people say, mommies don’t instinctively know what to do unless it is a question of survival. But for everything other than survival, gone are the days when society had faith in a mother’s instinct. We humans have come a long ways from there. We know too much. We want too much. We think too much. We worry too much. We analyse too much. We have disconnected from nature too much. And, society, very conveniently, left mommies out of the deal. I say, if mothers are expected to know everything about bringing up kids, fathers should be expected to go out into the jungle and hunt for food the good old way.
I hate it that society puts me up on a pedestal, says,”Oh! Don’t worry. It will all come naturally to you. Just follow your instincts”, and assumes the right to judge me every minute of the day. I hate it that I am not allowed to be human anymore. I am not allowed to get stressed, frustrated, sad, angry, or clueless about anything pertaining to my child.
How do i follow my instincts in today’s world? What are instincts anyway? I don’t think I have many left. My instincts are obscured by the information I am fed on a daily basis about bringing up kids. My instincts are lost in the deafening babel of voices telling me what to do and how to feel and how to react.
STOP IT people!! Just stop it! No matter what I say or do or feel, I love my daughter more than I love myself. None of you is ever going to be able to match up to me on that one. So, if you could please stay out of it, she and I can figure things out for ourselves. We might look lost at times, but don’t worry! we will find our way.

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