I am a worrier. A worry worm, if you will. I refuse to call myself a worry wort because that sounds a little bit too much like it could be sexually transmitted for my liking. Sadly it is not hard-hitting existential dilemmas keeping me awake at night, rather the more mundane questions in life like what should I cook for tea tomorrow, how much more stuff is there to do on the 'Stuff To Do' list and did I turn the stove off? But being a mum brings in a whole new set of worries. Whilst I haven't gone down the same path as my Mum who would lick her thumb and stick it under my nose when I was a baby to see if I was breathing, I do find myself constantly checking the dreaded 'Milestone Chart'.
Now if you're battling with anxiety of any kind the first thing a therapist will tell you is to do away with "shoulds" and here we have an entire bloody chart of them! When should Tricky make eye contact? When should he grab at toys? When should he roll over? When should he babble? If you look at the charts long enough, you'll spend half the time thinking your child will be developmentally delayed and the other half thinking they're going to be a genius and wondering if it's too early to call Mensa.
One place I find solace from my case of milestone stress is my mothers' group. I was a bit uncertain about joining a mothers' group - I had no idea what they really entailed. I had visions of being surrounded by a group of Suzi Q perfect mothers that would not only bore me to tears, but make me feel like a leper for my non-1950's housewife ways (although I think I'd look cute in an apron and heels). Either that or, considering it was based it my dodgy suburb, a bunch of bogans who would have their Winnie Blues tucked securely in to the sleeve of their best flannel shirt and do their best to smoke with their left hand and hold baby in their right, you know, to keep them safe from second hand smoke. But instead I found a bunch of women just like me... and by that I mean completely clueless first time mothers who just wanna hear that they're not the only one not getting any sleep and share pointers on the best way to burp/settle/not shake your baby.
I've come to the conclusion that mothers' groups are not actually designed to help new mothers at all. Well they are, but they have a higher purpose - they are actually there to protect the friends of new mothers from having to hear about each and every milestone as it's reached... well that and to save the world from endless poo stories. Because it gives us a chance to talk incessantly about our babies to people who don't mind at all - in fact when you finish saying how
Did you join a mothers' group? Did you find it helpful?
This post is part of Lori at Random Ramblings of a SAHM's Flog Yo Blog Friday! Below you'll find a bunch of links to some great blogs, so grab a cuppa and have a good read. On with the flogging!