Ahhh, this face! It’s SO far from a burden. It melts my heart. She is so innocent and sweet and when I look at her, all I can think is how she deserves the very best and I’d do anything to give it to her!

I know other parents feel the same about their kids.

All this time (throughout pregnancy and the postpartum weeks) I’ve mentioned here and there that others’ advice has bothered me at times. Well, I finally pinpointed what really bothers me, and it isn’t advice. I’ve been so grateful for so much of the advice I’ve received. It’s the “life is over once you have kids” stories – the people, the articles, the perspectives that proliferate on the web and in small talk and paint motherhood as martyrdom. And it isn’t that I am concerned I’ll feel the same or that the stories discourage me. It’s that I don’t want to be part of that talk. So many people joke about giving their kids away. They warn me how “hard” newborns are and how I’ll never sleep again and when I say “my newborn is not that bad” they say “just wait until she’s two.” But no. No, age two will not convert me to your group of complainers. Motherhood is hard, yes! But when are things not “hard?” When are you not challenging yourself somehow, whether through your career or relationships or an exercise routine or change? Having a baby brings a whole new set of challenges and there’s much more weighing on me “getting it right” because it’s all for her. But it’s no harder than life before. The things I worked hard at were never a burden. The choices I didn’t make weren’t sacrifices. To say that I sacrificed my “life” for motherhood is to imply that I have something better to be doing than raising my daughter.

Growing up, I never once heard my parents joke about giving us away. My dad took such joy in spending all of his free time playing with us. My mom couldn’t help but be involved in every aspect of our lives to make sure we were on the right path. They, and other moms and dads, do indeed have the most important job in the world – raising another human being – and the good ones deserve recognition and praise.

Oh sure, I vent to Chris and to friends and family! And yes – it is hard at times! But I just don’t find satisfaction in telling others about the burdens of motherhood and wearily shaking my head at what a martyr I am to be a mom. I’ve come to the conclusion that people just like to complain.

And that said, I must apologize if I’ve sugar-coated caring for a newborn on the blog. If I have, it isn’t because I desire to put on a nice front for you. It’s because I’m wary of giving the complainers something to latch on to. From this point on, I’m going to do my best to be very honest about the difficulties and joys of motherhood, but please know I would not change a single aspect of this “job” and I do not feel I deserve a hero cookie for the privilege of working, as my dad calls it, life’s finest gig.