Iz is my third child so she is my third round of The Mommy Wars (and if you don't know what that is, consider yourself lucky). It seems as though everywhere I go, either online or in real life, I run across moms who fall into one of two camps: my kid is better than yours or my kid is worse off than yours. My preference? To run into moms who do not believe they are in a competition ;) Unfortunately, I run into far more who are trying to "win." I am pround when my kids do something early.....but it doesn't make them better. Just early in one area and probably behind in another LOL. When my boys were little and I'd run across another mom who wanted to one-up me by having the better kid, I could usually be found walking away and going to play with my little guys.
I expected more of the same with Isabelle only maybe a little worse since her heart made her too tired to develop most of those "bragable" skills and she was and still is behind. I am pretty matter-of-fact about it--nope, she has not hit X or Y milestone yet and that's okay. Sometimes that is enough to stop the War in its track but I have been caught by surprise a few times and gotten the seemingly smug "oh, yeah, well MY baby hasn't done X, Y OR Z yet." Um, okay. We are competing in the other direction, I guess?
One thing that I am very grateful for is those moms I have run across who don't care who is first or last--they just care about sharing experiences and stories and offering support. My friend C who has a girl just eight days older than Iz and loves to share and worry and watch along with me as both our girls (and boys) grow and explore and figure out the world. Dear D who tells the stories of her own boys and their ups and downs. S who celebrates each belated milestone and is just happy Iz made it :) And the wonderful online heart baby community where so much love and advice and support is given. I cannot think of one time where anyone has pulled the "but my baby" card. In the heart world, Izzy's VSD is "minor", not as severe or scary as some of the other defects--but parents with babes with much scarier defects never say they have more reason to fear. They empathize, they offer encouragement, they recognize that fear is fear and we all need someone to share in that. The entire group rejoices when a baby is born and the heart is better than expected, they pray just the same for open heart surgery as they do for a cath, they offer support no matter what. While I wish no one ever had to deal with the uncertainty and worry and grief of a CHD, how wonderful that we have a "war-free zone" to retreat to for support.