Have I ever mentioned that motherhood is hard?
It’s a constant battle. A battle against the defiant will of a toddler, day in and day out. A battle against the inner guilt, and a battle against the snarky moms on Facebook who are just lying in wait to point out your failures. It’s a battle against public judgement, and a battle against losing yourself.
And it’s hard.
With that being said, you will remember that many, many months ago I posted about Dorothy’s big girl room inspiration (BTW: it’s still not done yet). Then I excitedly posted about our success with the big girl bed because I was genuinely amazed.
Then all went to hell.
Dorothy did great with her toddler bed for the first week. She stayed in bed all night, she went to sleep easily – a dream come true. Then the second, third and fourth week… well, it wasn’t so awesome. We would put her back in bed 8-10 times before 10 p.m. She would wake up 3-4 times a night and come trotting into our bedroom bright-eyed and bushy-tailed.
She was tired.
We were tired.
So, we gave up.
We didn’t try everything. We didn’t ever get her moved from her toddler bed to her twin bed with rails, which may have helped. We didn’t try the baby gate in front of her door. We just quit, cold turkey, and set the crib back up… which resulted in a lovely 11-12 hours of uninterrupted sleep for everyone.
Why am I writing about this? Well, for one, we were defeated. Our toddler won that round, which is never the most uplifting feeling. But, we were also defeated by the snarky Facebook moms.
One time I posted something that simply alluded to a problem with our big girl bed transition. One time. That’s all it took. All of a sudden every mom on my timeline had an opinion. I’m a blogger. I know all about having an opinion.
“Well, she’s too young. We’re keeping our son in his crib until he’s 14.”
“You’re doing it wrong.”
“So-and-so tried it with their daughter, and they went back to the crib. That’s what you’ll end up doing.”
No encouragement. Just, “you failed.”
They’re right. We absolutely failed with the first go at big girl bed transition. But here’s the point:
It happens. And it’s okay.
No one who had an opinion six months ago made me feel like it was okay. There aren’t a lot of blog posts or articles out there that tell you it’s okay when you fail. Falling short as a parent almost always feels like defeat, even when it’s just a stepping stone along the way to success.
Keep moving forward, as the Robinsons would say.
We failed. It was okay. If you fail, it’s okay too. You will know what’s best for your family when it comes to big milestones in your baby’s life. There’s no book on this. You are the expert when it comes to your children.
We’re now trying this whole big girl bed thing again, and perhaps it’s a better time for us. I mean, Dorothy did launch herself out of her crib last week, so the move was inevitable. Three days down, and things are still going swimmingly. *knock on wood*
So keep trying, mommas. And keep failing. It’s not the end of the world. And when you see another momma struggling, try encouragement instead of criticism. Let them know that it’s okay to fall short sometimes.
Everything is going to be okay.