Are We the First Generation of Moms to Get This Wrong Wednesday, May 24th, 2017
You have a brand new baby, and you have a question. So you pick up your phone… and instead of calling mom or grandma, you Google it. Instantly you have access to information and experts and thousands of other moms who have experienced the same thing. This isn’t the only place you go for an answer, but it is often the first. But this isn’t the way it used to be.
For every generation before ours, learning how to be a mom was something that was passed down from mother to daughter, not something that was looked up online. We are the first generation of moms burdened with the pressure of knowing more than our mothers.
Let’s talk about that for just a second.
In the past, if a woman wanted to know how to calm a fussing baby, handle an unruly toddler, train up a godly son or daughter, she didn’t Google it. She asked grandma, and grandma probably knew just what to do.
Today, our generation has unlimited access to unending information, and we feel responsible for keeping up with it. Like every generation before us, we want to do what is best for our children, but best seems to refresh as fast as our browsers.
So we don’t feel like we can always ask our moms what to do, because, well, they did it the old way.
After all, our generation knows more now. We know that the safest place for a child to ride in the car probably isn’t just roaming around in the backseat. We know that second hand smoke is bad. We know that babies need to be put on their backs to sleep. And we know a gazillion other things that have changed since we were kids.
Yet somehow… here we are… a generation of moms who lived through all of the things our moms did incorrectly, alive and able to tell our moms just how wrong they were back then.
But in sincerity, all of this new information makes us feel like we should look forward rather than draw from the wisdom of the past. So we go to online forums and we search and read what the experts are saying. And while the access to this information is a tremendous blessing, we don’t see that it is robbing us of the relationships created when daughters asks their mothers for advice.
Questions used to create community and now they just create Internet queries.
The truth is, motherhood isn’t new, it’s just repackaged. It may feel new to us. We may feel like we’re the first generation to learn the right way to raise our kids. But motherhood is as old as Eve. And while our questions might be different and our worries might not be the same as our mothers’, the emotions we are experiencing today were felt by every generation before us.
Our moms might not know about Instagram insecurity, but they know what it feels like to questions your ability as a mother.
Our moms might not know about GMO’s and DHA and how much screen time is safe for developing minds, but they know that a good pediatrician is someone worth trusting and that it’s okay to ask a professional for advice.
Our moms might not know exactly what it’s like to live in our pressure-filled motherhood, but they know what it feels like to try to be everything to everyone and how that can cripple your heart if you don’t go to Jesus for help.
Motherhood wasn’t supposed to be like this. We were never supposed to figure out how to be a mom on our own. In Titus 2, God instructs the older women to “teach what is good, so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands and to love their children.” He put this system in place so that new moms would have godly counsel and women they could go to for advice… and it was actually His idea long before BabyCenter launched.
Information may change, but our moms carry wisdom that was not only passed down to them by their mothers, but wisdom they earned through all of the seasons of life that we have yet to live… and we cannot miss it. Because…
Wisdom is never outdated, but it can be wasted.
So while we are the first generation of moms burdened with the pressure of knowing more than our mothers, it’s possible that we will also be the first generation to have more information and less understanding… more knowledge and less of a relationship… unless we decide to make sure that doesn’t happen. We must reach back and pull forward everything our moms have to share with us.
Motherhood works best when we include the generations before us.
Let’s not waste their wisdom.
SO much love, friend.