At 19, I was a good mother. My baby was happy and healthy. He had everything he needed. However, looking back, I was not the best mother I could have been to him. I could have had more patience. I could have spent more time with him. I could have held him more. I could have snuggled him more. I could have done more research on safety for babies instead of following older advice from well meaning friends and relatives. I could have rear faced him longer, I could have pumped a little longer, I could have done so many things that I do now.
But I didn't. I didn't know any better. I was naive. I was young. And I wasn't confident in my parenting choices and decisions at that time, and so I listened and followed what other people said I should be doing and I did what they said.
Now, at 27, I am still a good mother. My kids are still happy and healthy. They still have everything they need. But now, I can say, I am the best mother I can be. Getting up at night with Lena, I have noticed I have a lot more patience than I ever did with Landon. It is easier to give all of myself to my kids now than it was when I was younger. I am also very confident in my parenting choices now. I have learned to research and follow my own instincts instead of doing what everyone else thinks I should do.
Am I saying that teen mothers are any less or any worse than average aged mothers? No. As I said, I was still a good mother. Landon is happy, healthy, and smart. I wouldn't even go back and change anything. I'm glad I was a teen mom, I'm glad we had Landon and I wouldn't change him for the world. I'm glad he is who he is, and I'm proud of the young man he is becoming.
Do I wish I would have had him when I was older? No, not really. If I would have waited to have him, he wouldn't be him, and like I said, I wouldn't trade him for the world.
Does that mean I love him any less than I do her? Absolutely not. I love all of my kids. But as the saying goes, "When you know better, you do better."
*This is not to say that teen mothers or young mothers can't be as good of mothers as older mothers. Who knows, maybe when I am 35, I will be writing again saying that I am an even better mother then than I am now. In fact, I hope I do, I hope I keep getting better and better, my kids deserve the best mother in the world.*