I have found my self saying "being a mom is NOT for sissies" a lot this week.
My friend's baby girl has the stomach flu for the first time which unleashes a long conversation about puke and how it only get worse once they start eating real food. Then comes the potty training stories and the moms with older kids have to add in stories of injuries and dating... the teenage years.
We are more alike than we are different. This is a saying that we hear a lot when people speak of acceptance of people with Down syndrome. We like to point out all the things that our children with Down syndrome do and the emotions they experience and how they really are just like other children. Riley loves to play and run and laugh just like other boys his age. He also can be a totally stinker and be naughty and be mad or sad just like other kids.
I'm often reminded of how we are more a like than we are different when I have a chance to actually listen to other moms talk about their lives. It doesn't matter how many chromosomes your child has or if he can see or hear. It doesn't matter if you have a partner in crime to help you in the parenthood journey or if you walk that road alone. Working moms, work at home mom or stay at home moms its all the same. We are busy busy ladies trying to get it all done and keep a smile on our face and not dive into that bottle of wine before a respectable hour of the day. No matter your story being a mom is mentally, physically and emotionally challenging.
We all have those days when we rock the mom part. When we actually do have all the laundry done, school lunches packed the night before, have our child bathed and books read and children tucked safely in bed by 8pm so our angelic children have a great nights sleep and will rise to the level of genius the following day at school. Then the days where we run through the McDonald's drive through for dinner followed by a hour of yelling and fighting over homework followed by a brief kiss on the forehead and screaming children are safely tucked in bed by 10 so awake to early and be crabby and sleepy all day at school.
There are times when it feels that as moms we are too busy comparing our kids strengths or comparing who has the worst war stories to remember that we need to gain strength from each other and not compete with each other. My friend Tami had a great post about how she feels when people ask her about her daughter and if she is high functioning. It doesn't matter which side of the comparison you land on its never good. Do you feel bad because your child is too healthy or doing too well at school and why should you have it so good when some one else has to try so much harder? Do you feel bad because your child has to work 10 times as hard as another and still isn't as successful and then you feel guilty for thinking those thoughts because you really do love that little person that is succeeding and you want nothing but the best for them?
I have the honor of calling some pretty amazing women my friends. I wish they all had a blog I could share with you so you could celebrate them with me. I do have a couple I'll share with you and they are worth stopping over to read and say hi.
Emily grew up down the road from me... yes that was a dirt road. She shares her story of being mom to Eddie over at Family Connect. It is a resource for parents of children with visual impairments. Her post today touched my heart. You can find her story by clicking this link.
Karen blogs at The Rocking Pony I've found her story about her family and especially her son that is about Rex's age hysterical. Her son Micah has Down syndrome and is non verbal. He may not talk much but he is a character.
There are several of us blogging in the 31 for 21 Challenge and if you click on the button below it will take you to a list of all of them.
I need constant reminders that I need to live in the present and to put aside the mommy guilt regardless of the cause. I continue to gain balance and strength from own mom and my friends. Some of these friends I've known since childhood and others I've only known online through their blog posts. I hope you find strength in the mothers that you share your journey with you. Remember this journey isn't for sissies. Put yourself out there and find those moms that help build you up.