This Mother’s Day will be my second. I remember being surprised last year at how much the holiday meant to me, and how happy it made me. I was in the Mommy-club, and surprisingly I felt like I belonged, like I earned my spot. My baby was almost 9 months old, I was starting to settle into our “new normal” and the first couple months were fortunately just far enough away to start becoming a blur. So on that Mother’s Day, I felt good. I felt PROUD.
To feel proud, you have to feel confident. I know this because confidence is something I’ve struggled with my entire life. Even when I’m good at something, and have every reason to feel proud, I often lack the confidence to really own it. It’s disappointing because feeling proud and confident is a powerful experience. I’ve rarely felt completely confident in my abilities, even though I know I’m more than capable. I remember my freshman year of high school not thinking I was a very good basketball player even after winning the MVP award. And after 10 years and tons of accolades and recognition, I still don’t feel like a bona fide event planner. As I write this post, I doubt myself as a blogger, even though I’m being authentic and true. It’s silly and I know it but I can’t help it.
Where I’ve experienced the highest levels in confidence in my life aren’t in my abilities, but in my character: who I am. I know I’m a great daughter, a giving sister, a loyal friend. And I have every confidence that I’m a damn awesome wife too. But the source of most of my confidence lately has been in my newest role – as a MOM. Trust me, I have my fair share of doubt, mommy guilt, mental torture about whether or not I’m making the best decisions…and I definitely did NOT feel too sure of myself (or anything actually) those first few months. Actually, surviving those first few months gave me the confidence to know that if we can do THAT, we can do anything. So I guess I should be thankful on some level ;).
As moms we beat ourselves up way too often – and commonly question just about every move we make. It’s not fair. Not to anyone, but especially not to ourselves. I look at my daughter and revel in her amazingness. What a shame it would be if that didn’t translate into how I feel about myself as her Mom. How can she be so awesome if I’m doing a crappy job, right? Not to mention that she seems to think I’m pretty great, so why should I disagree? Looking at her, I can see the ways our parenting has supported her, encouraged her, and nurtured her and I feel proud. I feel confident. We’re doing a good job.
I can’t wait to celebrate Mother’s Day again tomorrow, knowing full well that I deserve to be acknowledged and honored, right along side the other awesome, capable and confident moms. And I can’t finish without saying that this feeling of pride wouldn’t be possible if I didn’t have the most amazing mom myself, and if I wasn’t surrounded by a community of moms that are doing a kick-ass job and allowing me to learn from them, experience with them and share this title – because I’m 100% confident there isn’t one better!