“Sweater, n. Garment worn by child when its mother is feeling chilly.” by Ambrose Bierce
When I first read this quote I thought, overbearing mother then I thought, is this me? It used to be, one hundred percent. The first time I laid eyes on my first-born, I knew I would want to protect him to no end. Shelter him from the cruel world we live in, from the future bumps and scrapes he would get, and the mean kids and future mean adults he would encounter. As soon as we become parents, we change. There is no denying it. We want to wrap them in this protective “sweater” for eternity yet give them space so they can experience and explore.
Being a first time parent, I did what I was told. Whether it was from the midwives, doctors, experienced parents to the hundreds of baby books I own. Yes, I have that many. I wanted to do everything perfect to give my new amazing joy of life, the best life possible. I set feeding schedule, I breastfed. I set naptime and bedtime routines, to a strict minute. When Buba was ready to be weaned, I went and bought all fresh, organic foods, and made everything myself. Wouldn’t this make his life perfect? It would be a healthy start but in no way is this what shapes them. My reality of providing perfection for him was blurred.
Now that I have Missy Moo, I have learned so much more. I no longer do as much as I am told and I go with the flow more. I still breastfed her but without the counting how many minutes she had drunk, for fear she would starve. I still have a set routine for naps and bedtime but if we are out, I wouldn’t rush home because she might be 30/40 minutes late for her schedule. The anxiety of having a perfect routine is gone because that’s not what provides a perfect life for them. Now I know this.
I now concentrate on the experiences, the love, the hugs and the kisses. I was raised on formula, jar food, and disposal diapers, but my momma gave me so much love, attention, and support, I had the best life possible. This is what I want for my children. It’s the ordinary moments that count not what routine they follow, that just helps the parenting process but shouldn’t be focused on entirely, which is what I first started off doing.
So do we do what we are told or do we go with the flow? What do you think?
This week from the lovely Mum Turned Mom is the The Prompt #3 – Sweater, quote above. A great link up for those that want to concentrate on the writing, for more on ‘The Prompt’ click below.