The other day I drove a few hours to have lunch with my friend and her kids. My daughter had the day off school, so I figured why not? and we took a little road trip. To see our friends. And their baby. Did I mention the baby? We might have been mainly there for my friend’s tiny, adorable one-month-old baby boy.
No, I mean we were there to see all of them. ANYWAY.
I was telling my friend about how difficult it is to fix dinner because every single night I walk into the kitchen with Adrienne toddling behind me, asking, “Cook? Cook? Hot?” Yes, I tell her, it’s time for me to cook dinner. And then she cries and screams nonstop until somebody picks her up or dinner is ready.
SIGH. It’s a problem.
My friend had a great idea. She said I should get a carrier and haul my giant toddler around the kitchen while I slave over the hot stove. And I asked if she remembered who she was talking to and reminded her that I don’t actually like to hold my baby every second of the day.
Or, something like that.
See, my friend and I are not exactly the same kind of moms. I mean, other than IN ALL THE WAYS THAT MATTER like loving our kids and working really hard to be the best mothers we can be and being so grateful to God for the gift of our kids and also being so exhausted for the same reason.
But she babywears. I – as you may have surmised – do not. I had both my babies via c-section; she did it the other way. She breastfeeds; both my girls were given formula from the get-go. We both use disposable diapers, but if she tells me tomorrow she’s switching to cloth, I won’t be surprised. We just do things differently.
And yet we manage to be the best of friends anyway! Without apologizing to each other or expecting the other to apologize! It’s a mom miracle!
[That’s sarcasm, friends. It is not, in the slightest, a miracle.]
See, I don’t understand judging other moms for the valid-but-different choices they make. Yes, I understand the difficulty of making parenting decisions for yourself and the doubts that creep up no matter what you choose. And I understand that convincing yourself that you’ve made the right choice requires you to dredge up a whole lot of passion that just might spill over to your friends who make different choices.
But seriously? Even when I’m feeling nervous or insecure about the choices I’ve made, I don’t need you to apologize for your parenting choices. And even more? I’m not going to apologize for mine. Because I’m doing the best I can (and so are you). And those choices work for me – and for my kiddos.
Thinking about this topic reminded me of a video I saw last year that actually made me think of this particular friend. I love it, so here it is:
Do you ever feel the need to apologize for your parenting choices?
This article originally appeared at Giving Up On Perfect.