Becoming a parent can be described as the most exciting, scary chapter of anyone's life. Many parents begin to read books about how to raise their children from the moment the first pink line develops on the pregnancy stick. It's always good to learn about what to expect, but realize that every parenting experience is different from all others in one way or another.
The eagerly anticipated arrival of baby can be a little daunting. Showers are held, the nursery to stock, the bottles with the perfect airflow and nipple shape are selected, and an appointment for a tour at the local hospital is scheduled. Now all anyone has to do is wait and all else will be a piece of cake, right? Not so fast. With every birth comes a new beginning, not just for the baby, but for the parents as well. Suddenly, parents find themselves comparing pounds, ounces, lengths, smiles, burps, even the number of poops to other babies.
If a newborn does not complete a mile-stone within a predetermined time, parents begin to worry. The next rational step is to visit the pediatrician for reassurance; which is usually given very freely. However, there is no word to describe a mother's intuition. This little voice screaming something is not quite right here. Even after Dr. Babyknowitall says there is "nothing to worry about" and "all children develop at their own pace". Mothers just seem to know.
When in doubt, check it out! Not just once, but twice or three times if necessary. A second opinion is always a good rule of thumb. Moms are figuring out their new family member as they go because most things that come up could not have been predicted and each new case is unique from any other. So what if you get unexpected news or a worry is validated?
Life is not over if a mom hears there is something to be concerned about or not fitting into the average developmental stages. It will be devastating and the stages of grief, guilt, and or why me will come. However, as any proud mom of a special needs child will attest to, it is then time to reevaluate the circumstances, set a game plan, and know that she was chosen to be the mommy for this little baby or better yet this little baby was chosen to be her child!