Several of you have used the phrase I'm about to discuss at one time or another, so no one can say I'm pointing out someone specifically! :o)
When Caleb was just three months old, Josh and I traveled for a Thanksgiving family gathering that was 2.5 hours away from our home. It would be an overnight trip (I think we left the evening before Thanksgiving) so I made sure to have enough diapers, wipes, clothes, toys, bouncy seat, and a pack-n-play. I was not nursing, so I made sure to have his bottles packed and his powdered formula ready.
When we arrived to our destination, we suddenly realized that we forgot something...the diaper bag! How could parents forget the diaper bag? What a horrible moment for me as a "new" mom. I felt so dumb. I felt like I let my baby down. The worst part was that he also had medicine packed in that diaper bag for an ear infection that I was supposed to give him every so many hours.
Diapers and formula could be bought at the store down the road. I think someone even bought me an extra outfit for him. He seemed to do ok without the medicine during the time we were there. The family gathering came and went. Now the entire thing is just a silly memory for me.
But during that time, I never said, "Oh, I'm such a bad mom." No one thought poorly of me, they probably just felt sorry for me! I do remember having tears about it, but that's because I felt stupid for leaving the one thing you're supposed to bring with a baby! :o)
Sarah was climbing into the van one day and I let her do it on her own as I walked around to get Gabriel into his seat. She must have lost her footing and fell and hit her head on the concrete floor of the garage. She cried hard and fell asleep within moments. I frantically called Peggy (who is an RN) and asked what I should do because it wasn't a time for her to nap or anything. She gave me instruction, and I knew what to look for. But at no time did I feel like I was a bad mom because my child fell.
I have not been right on track with check-ups for the kids sometimes. Caleb was late for his preschool promotion. Sometimes we have a late breakfast and I forget to make lunch. Sometimes I forget to do laundry in time for the kids to have the clothes I'd like for them to wear, so I have to dig and find something less desirable for them to wear.
And I've seen moms flippantly say they are bad moms for such things. I wish they wouldn't. You know you're not truly a bad mom if you forgot to bring your child's backpack to school or you let them have cookies for breakfast.
There are plenty of things that come to mind that might label someone as a bad mom. Abandonment perhaps? Not feeding your children because you need the money for a drug addiction? But I can't presume to know the heart or mental capacity of these women either, so who knows.
Might I suggest that we become more mindful of the phrase bad mom. Because really...there isn't any mom I know personally that is a bad one.
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