Monday, October 20, 2014

Let's clear things up - I'm pro complaining

It's time to clear something up. Two things really, but they are kind of related. Here are two rumors my blog has started (based on both Facebook and real life comments that I've received).

1. I have my act together as a new mom.
2. I'm against complaining.

When this is your view, what's there to complain about?

I promise you, neither of those is remotely true. But I absolutely see how I'm giving off that mistaken impression (although I would guess yesterday's post did some good work to disprove statement #1).

Let's take a deeper look. We'll start with #1.

I don't have my act together. Trust me. I do have something that makes me luckier than literally every other new mother I have ever met. My husband has six weeks of paternity leave and has been home with me full time. I could go on and on for days about how wonderful this is and how grateful I am and how it's a crime that every father doesn't get more leave. I'll just say that obviously I'm able to stay significantly more sane with only 50% of the parenting duties, not to mention having another adult around who is not filled with crazy postpartum hormones to talk me down if need be.

Or I could just stare at baby feet in socks that look like sneakers.

Second, this is a blog. My internet persona is different than my real life one. I decided in that time I can barely remember, before I had Dalton, that I was going to focus on the positive if I wrote any mommy posts (and then it turned out all my posts are currently mommy posts.) There are more than enough posts, articles, tweets, etc. on the internet to convince someone that parenthood is the worst mistake a person can make, or at least it feels that way when you're pregnant and terrified. My blog didn't need to be one more.

It will be a happy place of bright colors and cute babies!

On to #2.

I'm not anti complaining. I see that Facebook thing that's like "Go 24 hours without complaining and your life will turn around and be full of free money and calorie free chocolate!". I doubt I could last even an hour. Complaining is actually a good thing (or maybe we should call it venting), in my humble opinion, because it lets you get your frustrations out in a healthy way that doesn't result in you getting fired or divorced or some other disastrous consequence. Having other mothers to commiserate with is essential.

I just think complaining about your family (and that includes your baby, even though he or she is too young to understand) falls into the vast, underrated category of "things to tell your real life confidants and not your random Instagram followers". I can text my mom or sister or BFF and let out my frustrations about the baby being up half the night, and they are well aware that doesn't in any way affect the intense, unconditional love I have for him. Tweet the same thing out to a few hundred followers, however, and they might not necessarily be so sure. Plus, who knows what will happen to this series of tubes we call "the internet", but I hate the idea of Dalton eventually finding a giant collection of my complaints that make it seem like I hated caring for him (which couldn't be further from the truth). I'm not claiming to know much about young children, but in a decade of teaching, I have learned that kids figure out technology way before you might expect.

He'll be proficient with an iPhone 6 in a week or so.
I'm not saying I'll never post anything that's not sunshine and rainbows. But posting complaints about life with a baby should follow the same rule as posting selfies. If you post an occasional one, that's fine. But if you look at your Instagram profile and find your own face staring back at you over and over, you've gone too far. It's not a good look.


I don't want it to sound like I've been posting disingenuous happy posts. I've 100% meant everything I've said. The takeaway here is that when I'm sitting down deciding "what do I want to write about today?", I'm aiming to mostly go for the part about how I just can't stop kissing those plump chubby cheeks rather than the low number of hours of sleep we got last night. That's boring anyway. I think at this point even the most childless bachelor knows that babies make you tired.

In the comments of this post, it's a safe place to complain about anything you want.





  1. AMEN X100000. But of course, we both know my thoughts on certain parents who don't shut up about how their offspring are a constant irritant to them.

  2. How is it that I don't see these parent complaining posts? I'm pretty sure I would find them hilarious and enjoy judging them.

  3. New follower :) I loved this post and agree completely! As a new(-ish...can it really already be a year?) mom, I think it's easy to look as though I have my act together on the outside when I feel the complete opposite inside!

  4. I'd like to complain about the fact that I have to go back to work next week. Boo! I want to hang out with my baby longer!

  5. I love this post. You are so real . . . Dalton is a lucky guy.

  6. Wow, six weeks of maternity leave for Eric is nice! This explains the good hair in your pictures. YOUR SECRET IS OUT!

  7. I feel grateful my husband will be able to take 3 weeks off. I wish more dads could take off 2 or more weeks when their new one arrives. I'm pretty sure I have some of those same outfits. :)

  8. I feel the same way about how ppl gripe about their parents. People who don't know me well enough to know I love my family might get the impression they are/were horrible individuals.


Thanks for commenting! Comments make me probably more happy than they should.