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Why I’m Apologizing to My Baby

When I first had my baby, my sense of humor went on hiatus. Sure, sometimes I felt amazed and content, but often I was a weeping, cranky mess who couldn’t believe my perfect child was going to be in our apartment, needing me, all the time.

A few months in, while nursing my infant for the millionth time after a long, colicky day, I found myself wishing she would hurry up so I could have a glass of wine. My first reaction was to laugh at the wrongness of that thought and my second was to say sorry. That’s when I had the idea to apologize for my subpar parenting moments (of which there were many). So I created the Dear Baby XO Facebook page as “a place to confess parenting crimes.” Not REAL crimes. Crimes like telling my baby there were Cheerios in the hamper so she’d climb into it and leave me alone for one second… or taking a picture of her face plant on the couch before helping her up. Suddenly, I was laughing again.

It has now become a book: Dear Baby: I’m Sorry…Apologies for Life’s Little Parenting Fails is a compilation of all those less than stellar parenting moments we should apologize for. Probably.

I originally wrote Dear Baby apologies as a way to lighten those exhausting, frightening days of new parenthood and express my love of comedy in a bite-size way. When I saw the enthusiastic response, I realized it was helping other people feel better after rough days with their own babies. It has since grown into a thriving online community, a “shame-free zone” where moms can laugh and commiserate.

I’m proud of the book Dear Baby: I’m Sorry… because it’s the messy, irreverent truth about parenting, not some sanitized, Hallmark version. Maybe it will even give moms room to feel a smidge less guilt, or a bit more permission to go try on scented lotions and browse crap they don’t need in random stores instead of coming right home after that dentist appointment. (Hell, I did. And I’d do it again).

It’s also compact, and a breeze to read on four hours sleep. Dear Baby: I’m Sorry…requires very little brain activity on behalf of the sleep-deprived parent. There’s no pesky plot – just instantly relatable pictures of a baby in comical situations paired with hilariously dry captions. Easy. And guaranteed to make any bedraggled new (or expectant) parent feel better.

Besides belly laughs, I hope moms will take away the idea that it’s okay to do things “wrong” (in fact, it is impossible to do everything “right”) and to see that some of our less glowing thoughts about parenthood are totally normal. Also, that it is 100% fine to polish off the Cheddar Bunnies and take Facebook personality quizzes during the baby’s nap time instead of folding the damn laundry – again.

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