I read “War and Peace” when I was 7 years old.
I memorized Hamlet’s soliloquy when I was 5, and I ran the New York City marathon when I was 3.
Do you believe any of this? Of course not. Yet so many mothers I know might believe me if I said my daughter did all these things.
And then the mom would answer that her child won the Nobel Peace Prize after negotiating the end of the Great Sandbox War of 2011.
Everyone has encountered these competitive moms.
A good dose of bragging is expected, and it can be healthy for a new mom to share her excitement for her baby’s growth and development.
But sweet adoration too often crosses the line into annoying obsession.
I listened to a group of mothers clucking away at a story time session that my daughter CeCe and I attended.
I heard about who was rolling, who was crawling and who was studying quantum physics during his night-time bottle.
When Mom # 1 shared that Jacob made two new consonant sounds last week, Mom # 2 announced that Isabella miraculously made four new sounds, and then wouldn’t ya know it, Sophia made FIVE.
This continued as they compared sleep habits, eating technique and pre-reading skills, whatever that means. Each child was somehow ahead of the last.
The kicker came when one mom asked if my 6-month-old daughter was crawling yet.
“Nope, not yet.” I responded.
The woman’s eyes filled with pity faster than mine did with rage. “Oh … well that’s OK. She’ll get there eventually …”
Guess what, ego-Moms: Not all of our children are Harvard-bound. Some will be C students who are gifted at sports or athletically inept but with a love of art.
When you raise your child to believe he is the best and the first at everything, you’ll end up with an egomaniac or an emotional wreck.
Because here is the truth – when 4-month-old Joey picks up that cardboard book about a farm animal, he is not actually reading it. He is about to eat it. And there is nothing wrong with that.