There are around 8,700 hours in a year and I have been a mom for 13 years so I have logged over 100,000 hours of momness. Malcolm Gladwell says you only need 10,000 hours to be an expert in something. According to Gladwell's calculations I am 10 times better at being a mom than the Beatles were at singing. Finally--something useful from math! So I'm going to give you some insight on momness for free--try getting anything from the Beatles for free.
It is very au courant to be obsessed with your birth and how it will take place--at home, in water, with a doula, with or without medicine, with or without heroics, etc. I've read blogs written by women who yearn for a vaginal birth--that's right YEARN. More power to them. Do whatever you want. Just remember, in the scheme of things, it's still just one day--2 at the most. (Note to people who spent more than 2 days in labor: Save the horror stories for your own blog.) I have no advice about this other than to assure you that, yes--you've thought more about this and read more about it and about Googled it more than any woman who has ever gone into labor. (I'm actually using sarcasm here to make the point that most moms-to-be are thoughtful and do their best. Let's give each other a break instead of insisting that we all borrow each others' birthing pools.) Don't forget your pre-birthing wax! Just kidding! Ah, life is strange.
Then of course everybody wants to talk about nursing. Nursing is good, we all know that. But I think we'd all be pretty proud of ourselves if giving our kids a bottle was the worst thing we ever did to them. Last week I kicked a laundry basket full of toys out of my way and yelled, "I'm so sick of this!" See? Much worse than a bottle. I regret it. I don't regret any bottles, blankies or pacifiers. Kicking a laundry basket is really the opposite of nourishing a baby with a bottle, isn't it? And yet no one ever talks about it. You might give it some thought.
After we have our babies we're all fatter than we want to be and it consumes our life whether we are training for a race, giving up sugar, or doing HCG. I myself have been trying to be healthier and that's a good thing, of course, but it occurs to me that my body doesn't hold me back, let me down, or fail me in any way other than not looking as thin in clothes as I want it to. That's pretty good. The other day my son spontaneously challenged me to beat him around the bases at the park. I went from sedentary to a full out sprint. Was I sore the next day? Yes. Did I beat him? YES. (Did I wet a little? No comment.) I hate talking about "my body" as separate from myself because I think it's sort of gross like when Roger Daltry sings, "But my body feels so good and I still sing a razor line," in You Better You Bet. I hate that part. Anyway, getting back to my body--it's much more reliable than at least half the people in my ward. Sometimes I feel sad that I now weigh what I weighed 9 months preggers with my first baby. Oh well. Much better to be cheerful and appreciate my body. There, there--that's a good body. My body wants to say hi to you. Body, quit being so shy! Oh, body.
Once some of these issues are resolved you can move on to advanced momness. More on that another time.