After I had Nikaia I let myself get sucked into that mom competition that goes on sometimes between mothers who have babies within a short period of time of each other. I would compare her to other babies around the same age, which is not only unhealthy, but completely unnecessary. I admit it though, I let myself get sucked in to the wanting my baby to do something first. I am convinced every mother does this at some point, if you say you never once thought that even for a second in your head, then I don’t believe you.
Now that Nikaia is getting older, and I am about to have baby #2, it is dawning on me the degree of stupidity that it takes to really go full on baby olympics with it. There are the moms who compare because they want to make sure there is nothing wrong with their baby. That is the category I fell into. I worried when Nikaia started crawling after kids who were younger than her, which I think is a natural thing to do. Of course, every mom wants their baby to be special so they look for something amazing and entertaining and just plain adorable that they can do (maybe even before another baby can do it, too), and while that feeling is normal, obsessing over it and constantly talking about it is not. When I started getting jealous of moms whose babies started popping teeth before Nikaia I realized that I was getting a little cuckooo bananas and needed to adjust my focus, so I did and I got the hell over myself. It seems to me that there are moms who don’t catch themselves falling into this dangerous pattern and throw themselves fully into the baby comparisons and turn it into an organized sport. I am not just talking about comparing milestones, I am talking creating them from thin air to achieve that bloated sense of self worth that apparently comes from their tiny newborn writhing on the floor like an uncoordinated turtle on it’s back right in step with a song on the radio for 5 seconds straight. I am not exactly sure how to feel about this sort of thing when I watch it. Should I feel bad for them because they are obviously either 1) driving themselves crazy worrying about who else’s baby rolled over first, or 2) they are so delusional that they think their baby actually consciously made the decision to roll over at only 6 days old? Should I be worried because of the unrealistic expectations they could very well end up putting on those babies as they get older? Or, should I just sit back and laugh at the level of complete lunacy that the baby olympics rise to?
I will admit, it does make me just a little sad that these kids REAL milestones, their real intentional accomplishments, will most likely be overlooked in some kind of quest for the holy baby grail waiting for their kid to accidentally sign the word “alabaster” to them while they are trying to figure out how to get the Cheerio on their high chair tray successfully into their mouth.
P.S. Moms, if your child walks into a job interview in 18 years and proclaims that they are so advanced for their age that they were walking at 9 months old, or they poo-pooed in the potty before they turned 2, their interviewer is not going to be impressed and offer them a 6 figure salary and an expense account. They MIGHT, however, think they are super creepy and pretend that the position has already been filled.