Thief of Joy

New year, new blog post and I’m back with a vengeance!! October had us busy flying off to London and Ireland and then the holidays hit and now it seems every ounce of free time is consumed by chasing a crawling Rory. But I’m baaaack and ready to share some things I’ve been processing lately.

The season of pumpkin spice everything has come and gone and peppermint mocha is slowly making its exit. Now we are faced with the season of new gym memberships, diets, and book lists for the new year. I try not to make any hard and fast resolutions because I usually fail to meet them. But at the end of each year I like to reflect on the 365 days gone by. 2015 will always be a big year in my life. It was the year of Rory – the year I became a mother. The year of equal and vast amounts of fear and joy at this new role. Sleep deprivation and spit up, hugs and smiles. Teething, crawling, falling, crying, laughing. And hearts swelling to hear our sweet boy call us by name for the first time.

Years from now, when I look back on 2015 I want to remember all the ways it has changed me. Finding my footing in Rory’s world while staying grounded in my own. Balancing my needs and his and everyone else’s. Learning to say no.

On our way back from Chicago for a New Year’s Eve wedding of some dear friends, Brad and I had our annual year end conversation. Reflections on our own successes and failures. Setting goals and intentions for the coming year. As we were talking, it became abundantly clear to me that in every category the theme was the same. Stop comparing myself to other people. 

I read a quote once (let’s be real, it was on Pinterest) that said “Comparison is the thief of joy” and for some reason it has always stuck with me. Like, come on Katie, you’re missing what’s right in front of you because you’re focusing on what you don’t have.

So that’s my goal. To stop comparing. I’m sure it’s much easier said than done because it creeps its way into every corner of my life.

Not losing the baby weight, even after a year.

Going back to work when a good mother would stay at home to raise her family.

Co-sleeping, breastfeeding, baby wearing, and every other parenting decision that everyone seems to have an opinion on.

I’m sure every new mom has compared her baby to others even remotely the same age. Each milestone is like a secret competition and when one isn’t reached by a certain age, slight panic and terror set in. I know I can’t be alone in this, right?!

And it’s crazy, because these comparisons are brutally unfair. They take the worst parts of me and put them up against the best parts I see in others. And it’s stealing my joy. How can I be happy when I feel like I’m never enough?

So 2016 is the year I will reclaim my joy and focus on what I need to do to be the best version of myself, not someone else. Rory is becoming less of a blob and more of an actual person – with thoughts, and feelings, and a personality – and he’s watching me. He sees when I scoff at myself in the mirror. And soon he will notice when I compare our family to a family down the block who has more cars, more house, more money.

What I want him to know and what I want to remember is this: what we have and who we are is enough. We are not defined by how many likes we get on Facebook, whether or not we could walk by our first birthday, how long it took for us to feel comfortable in our own skin. Our joy is complete because we have each other and together we strive to be our best.

One Comment Add yours

  1. dawn469 says:

    Repeat after me: Staying home does NOT automatically make you a good mother! You have a happy, healthy, and growing boy. ..THAT makes you a good mother!

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