No More Judging
KIRSTEN: You have to have someone who lives close to you so you can call and say, "Oh, my God, he was supposed to be asleep, but he's not. Let's go get coffee."
AMANDA: Like the group I was in here at the parenting center: We still get together for a playgroup, and we know that we have that hour a week to look forward to.
LS: It takes a while to get fully comfortable with the role of mother. I don't think it's six weeks or even six months; it's more like a six-year process. All your identities converge, and you finally settle into being just you with these different aspects of your life.
DEBORAH: I think what you're saying is that motherhood is very humbling. Just when you think you've got it under control.
LS: …it all changes. Whatever phase you and your kid are in, you always feel this balance of hardship and wonderfulness.
LIZ: And we don't really know how it's all going to turn out.
GRETA: Perhaps one of the lessons here is that we'd all be better off learning to drop the expectations for perfection early in the parenting game.
DEBORAH: And we should try not to be so judgmental of each other.
LS: I always say mothering is a competitive sport. It brings out the deepest, most intense feelings because we're all struggling and wanting so much to succeed. Everyone is just trying to do her best.
Meeting of the Moms
Lisa Spiegel, 40, codirector of the Soho Parenting Center, moderator; Amanda Beesley, 33, writer, mom to Savannah, 5 months; Liz Bentley, 31, magazine ad director, mom to Teddy, 6 months; Alicia Fidelman, 34, associate TV producer, mom to Hannah, 5 months, and Joshua, 3 years; Kirsten Kern, 36, chef, mom to Max, 9 months; Jessica Orbach, 22, student, mom to Eve Grace, 6 weeks; Greta Peterman, 37, business manager, mom to Djoumé ,11 weeks; Deborah Rogers, 38, fashion designer, mom to Alex, 3 months, and Lucas, 2½ years; Cynthia Stern, 45, photographer, mom to Nicole, 11 months.
All content here, including advice from doctors and other health professionals, should be considered as opinion only. Always seek the direct advice of your own doctor in connection with any questions or issues you may have regarding your own health or the health of others.
Copyright © 2001. Reprinted with permission from the February 2001 issue of Child Magazine.