Middle Child 4 Year Old Not Sleeping After New Baby Happy Mother’s Day to Every "Good-Enough Mother"

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Happy Mother’s Day to Every "Good-Enough Mother"

For many of us, Mother’s Day evokes something deeply cherished. For others, ambivalent feelings remain. You see, after thirty-three years in the counseling field and wiping tears from many faces, I can accurately say that not every woman feels that she was, was, or is a “good enough mother.”

So what exactly is “good enough mom”? English pediatrician Donald Winnicott, MD—an influential object relations psychoanalyst—believed that this type of mother was a different type of mother because she did not hold perfectionism as her model. Good for you, Doc Winnicott; this is the “one like” button here for sure. Honestly, I never realized that perfectionism in motherhood was even a possibility. Maybe it’s a new app.

I loved being a “good enough mom.” I use the past tense now because my children’s needs have changed: my precious daughter, Katie, is in heaven with her Maker, and my ever-humorous son, Richard, is happily raising his sweet family. Everyone would laugh at my memories deep thoughtsmy memories.

For example, in those first few weeks of motherhood, if someone even mentioned my new daughter’s name, my chest would heave like the Trevi Fountain. Thank you Mother Nature.

And we all know that babies need things like diapers—lots of them. There are no designer pampers for this mother either; both children were allergic to the plastic coating. Plus, my mindset was allergic to the idea of ​​doing something easy when I could do it the hard way. Folding was nothing, but the trip to the Laundromat? Now this was a walk because we didn’t have a washer or dryer and we had a car. Besides, someone had to make a living. (Yes, my husband’s name was “Somebody.”) Oh, the things we women do to save for a house. And I really did work within a budget – I absolutely resisted buying a stackable washer/dryer combo for the apartment – even though “Somebody” thinks I scratched my nose at just the word “budget”.

~ I smile remembering the days in the sun watching my kids splash in a plastic pool with pictures of fish and waves on the side or showing me their cheeks for a kiss whenever the urge strikes.

~ You smile remembering the pre-teens when I would buy a dozen donuts after mass and eat three because “kids like donuts.”

~ I smile remembering all those checkups and my favorite pediatrician (who happened to look like Antonio Banderas) telling me “I can barely stand” at one. night in four months”. Then he narrowed his eyes and leaned in, “You’re not playing with him when he wakes up are you?” When I didn’t answer right away, he turned his head, pursed his lips, and continued in a much louder voice, “Who wouldn’t want to wake up, take a sip, and play? Next time, just give that boy water and he will never wake up in the middle of the night again!” Ladies, I think there’s a lesson for us in there somewhere!

So for the new moms out there, don’t worry so much about how things look or who has what. Don’t worry about doing every child’s play, every practice, while you rush to work, clean the dog, cook from scratch for your friend – Yes! It is simply too much for every woman, every mother! Instead, take a deep breath, save a face for yourself, and just do the best you can at being a loving and devoted, dare I say, “good enough mom.”

Happy Mother’s Day, dear mothers.

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