Parenting can be hugely scary. In a very finite and practical way. When our first child was born, I knew zero about kids.
So imagine my fright when I had to put one of those long sleeved thingies on this child. He was born in May, so why did he need long sleeves? How about just a diaper? But the conventional wisdom at the time meant I had to put him in a sack contraption with long sleeves. They weren’t designed for infant arms limp as spaghetti. I remember how much I sweated, terrified I was going to do something awful to him as I tried to pull on the sleeve.
Ultimately I was able to accomplish this herculean task once I stopped sweating and my hands dried out. I had made his arm slippery and my fear made a mundane task so much harder. That was an important lesson.
This entire process started the self-doubt that afflicts many first time mothers. Are we doing it right? The rushing of love and fear that I felt for that little boy changed me permanently.
I loved that baby and learned how we can be both made strong and weak at the same time. Love made me strong, and fear made me weak yli4kpb. I had to manage both.
But this lesson of self doubt proved applicable in other areas as well. While I worried about being a ‘good’ mother, later I was to worry about pursuing the next step on a path, or accomplishing the next task.
I remember my first driving lessons which were in a standard transmission car on the ranch. I had to manage both the shift and the accelerator pedals smoothly or the car would jerk and sometimes stop. So often we hit the pedal of self doubt harder than the pedal of courage. We may stall our forward momentum. Life is like that – pressures from inside and outside. The trick is to be convinced you can do it. I convinced myself I could raise our child. I willed myself into that person and was successful. Over the years I have convinced myself I could manage other tasks, and I have.
It is better to listen to the voice telling you to be strong than the one telling you to be afraid.