Being selfish is not something to be proud of.
“The lady at number 82 is very selfish” would unlikely be a compliment.
And I wouldn’t like to think of myself as selfish. As the type of person who would do things without consideration for others. Thinking only of what I stand to gain.
Yet being selfish isn’t just advisable. It’s essential.
I didn’t get the luxury of a slow fade into parenting (although I’m not sure having a baby should be described that way). I went from 0 to 3 one spring evening. It immediately became evident the impact this would have. The signicant and continuous demands on everything I had to offer.
And I gave it my all. Everything I had. Because that’s what decent people do.
My body and mind let me get away with it. But only for a while.
Being selfish isn’t a design flaw. We need to look out for ourselves.
Us parents want to put our kids first. We can’t do that if we’re not here (in body or in mind). There’s that voice that tells me to be a little selfish, to have a day off, to say no to that sleepover, to sit them in front of the TV so I can read a book (or just sit and stare into the distance). We need to listen to that voice.
Being selfish doesn’t make me a bad parent. It’s essential.