The Best Piece of (Unsolicited) Advice I Got as a Mom

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You know how it goes. The second you announce your pregnancy all of the moms out there can’t seem to resist putting their two cents in. Me included! Most people’s advice comes from a genuinely good place. They want to share their experiences and even help you avoid making some of the mistakes they’ve made.

But when you are 38 weeks pregnant, summer is at its peak, and you feel like a giant whale sausaged into a maternity swimsuit, perhaps it’s not the right time or place to hear the benefits of singing to your unborn baby or why that iced cold diet ginger ale you are sipping on is not good for you or the baby. 

The look on my face when someone gives me unwanted parenting advice.

That being said, the best piece of advice I ever received was from a co-worker who always seemed to have some sort of wisdom for me. She told me, “Sometimes, you are going to be overwhelmed. Your kid is going to lose it in public. And you might have to abandon your shopping cart right then and there in the supermarket.” Her advice seemed insignificant at the time, and I didn’t think twice about it.

But do you know what? She was SO right.

I remember the day her advice hit me like a ton of bricks. It was the day before an impending snowstorm. We were low on groceries, so my 16-month-old and I set off to the store. As always, I was armed with my arsenal of snacks and his pacifier just in case. He was a tad cranky, but it was nothing I couldn’t handle.

Surprise, surprise, the grocery store was packed. I’m talking checkout lines-going-into-the-aisles PACKED. We were about halfway through the store, and I had been fending off a major meltdown left and right, but my sons’ tears were out in full force. It was like a wild ferret was trying to climb out of the shopping cart. I was THAT mom. I was utterly flustered with an inconsolable child in a supermarket full of onlookers.

Then it hit me. My co-worker’s advice.

I took a calm step back, picked him up out of the shopping cart, and I decided to leave the store. Instantly, we both relaxed. The tears stopped rolling down his cheeks. My feelings of frustration and panic completely vanished. So what if I didn’t have any groceries to show for it? My son felt better, and so did I. I know for sure that at that moment, I made the right choice for not only my son but for me as well.

The supermarket will always be there. A public meltdown of colossal proportions was not worth any amount of milk, bread, and ice cream in my shopping cart. Okay, maybe the ice cream. But you get my point!

So here’s a huge heartfelt thank you to my co-worker who shared her advice with me. While it may have been unsolicited, it has hands down been the best piece of advice I’ve ever been given as a mom. And wouldn’t you know that sticking to my right time/right place rule of thumb, this is the first piece of advice I find myself dishing out to expectant moms. The irony in that is not lost upon me!

I sincerely hope you take what the lady on the internet has to say with a grain of salt. And if you made it this far, also know that it is OKAY to wave that white flag, surrender to the universe, and cut your losses for the best interest of you and your child.

What has been the best piece of advice you received as an expectant or new mom?

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Catherine currently lives in the Crestwood section of Yonkers. She and her husband moved there in 2015 from the Bronx shortly after they got married to start their family. Catherine is the mom to two very sweet and active young boys, ages three and one, making her very well versed in anything dinosaur, trains, or cars related. Oh, and Paw Patrol. We can't forget that! Before kids, Catherine studied at Pace University to become a Registered Nurse. Catherine currently works per-diem at a local Westchester Hospital in the surgical department. When Catherine is not picking up shifts at the hospital or spending time with her family, she can be found painting and refinishing furniture in her home. She even has a fun Instagram account at instagram.com/thefurniture_rn. Navigating life as a new(ish) mom has presented many joys, challenges, and laughs. Catherine looks forward to connecting with you and sharing her experiences.

4 COMMENTS

  1. I’ve gotten lots of great unsolicited advise. I totally agree, some of what I’ve heard didn’t resonate at the time but became incredibly real months or years later. Some of my favorite advise was when I was very pregnant with my first. Someone told me “try to enjoy it even now, because this is the last time you’ll be able to keep your baby happy, healthy, and safe, just by walking around and living your life. It’s a magical ability.” I held on tight to that for my ninth month and throughout my next pregnancy, and it’s so so true!

    • It’s so true! Those are truly words of wisdom from a mom who sounds like they’ve been around the block once or twice.

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