Life can be all about comparison with others, it’s only natural, that’s how we establish how well we are doing, what our boundaries are, what is appropriate behaviour and this all happens pretty much from birth. I work on comparison, I cant help it, I’m a child of the Thatcher years. I measure myself against everyone else. I try not to but I can’t help it and living in St Albans doesn’t help. It’s a town full of wealthy wives of bankers and so on, comparisons are inevitable.
I’m lucky enough to be blogging friends with Lisa aka the Mummy Whisper she has lead me through one workshop and her blog provides an endless source of help, hints and advice. Over the past year, I have tried to change my thinking a bit, although its very hard. Actually, analysing my values has helped a lot. I have also tried to put myself first a bit more, this has been a very positive thing for all.
Being a good enough mum is something that is all in the mind. I’m convinced feelings of not ‘being worthy’ can lead to all manner of difficult states of mind and I’m sure it almost certainly leads to post-natal depression. The good enough mum probably doesn’t spend the entire night awake worrying about whether she has purchased the right washing powder (so as not to irritate the baby’s delicate skin). She probably doesn’t spend the rest of the night awake trying to get the baby to sleep. I suspect she probably leaves the baby to cry for a bit, and thus encourages night-time sleep. The good enough mum does not subject herself to endless trips to baby groups and coffee mornings, where she has to interact with other mothers she nothing in common with. She takes her maternity leave and uses it to visit her pre-baby friends and indulge her hobbies. The good enough mum saves her money for herself, she does not fill her house with plastic toys and she still has an adult living room. The good enough mum is secure in herself.
At the end of the day, I’m starting to think that everyone is a good enough mummy for their child. So what if I feed them fish finger and pasta with grated cheese. So what if they watch a couple of hours television per day. It doesn’t matter in the long run, they are healthy and happy and loved. And, if all else fails you can always find a celebrity mum whose life is a total disaster. Kerry Katona springs to mind.
Now, my next challenge is to be a good enough wife.