Parenting 101: Do as everyone else does or Wing it?

“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.

 mumturnedmom

14 thoughts on “Parenting 101: Do as everyone else does or Wing it?”

  1. I was having this exact conversation with a friend the other day. She now has three, and my eldest (4yo) was born when her first was a year old. I did everything as you have described above, and I remember her asking me how I would sustain that with subsequent children, because she knew she wouldn’t be able to…

    …I now have two kids and another about to join us any day. Although some things have remained a constant (mainly where food is concerned, for a whole host of reasons) I am much more relaxed and laid back than I was when 4yo was a baby. Being more chilled out has had such a positive effect on my middle child, and she is a very happy bunny for it. My eldest on the other hand is rather highly strung, and I’ve often thought that this is no coincidence.

    I totally agree with what you’ve said – it’s the love, affection and attention they will remember in the long run #ThePrompt

    Reply
    • So very true. I still have routines in naptime, bedtime, and eating but I am WAY more relaxed now. I completely agree, my first is high strung, stresses easily and I think this is no coincidence either, because my second is the most chilled out, relaxed baby ever. Thanks for popping over from The Prompt. Hope to see you here again.

      Reply
    • Yes, agreed. I can’t tell you how many times, I found a rash, or they had a slight fever, or were acting off and I ran to google and tried to find a solution like a mad person. Then when I wasn’t satisfied I ended up at the doctors far more times then necessary at first. lol I am much more relaxed and less anxiety about it all. I still have my moments though. haha

      Reply
    • I think we get better and better at parenting too with each child. It’s no longer anxiety attacks and googling for things well as much as it used to be. I would love more children. Wonder what kind of mom I would be by time I got to five or six. hahaha 😉 jks

      Reply
  2. I think we all get more relaxed and confident with each child, I know I am quite different now than I was with my first. Although one of the things I became stricter with was routine, a flexible one 🙂 but I realised after the first few months of chaos with number one how important structure was – for all of us! This is a really great post, thanks so much for linking up with #ThePrompt xx

    Reply
    • Thank you for hosting a great linky. I am still very strict on scheduled times but only when I can be, if we are out all day and it’s not going to work then there is always tomorrow to fix it. I only stick to it because both of my kiddies have slept 7pm-7am solid since 8 weeks so I have to say routine did something magical. I just have way less anxiety now about the small stuff. 😉

      Reply
  3. Great post. My kids have a routine, but other than the bedtime pattern, it’s not too rigid. I’m definitely more go with the flow with my second child, and I don’t really listen to anyone else – they’re mine, I know them best 🙂

    Reply
    • That’s fantastic, so true. They are yours and no one can judge or say otherwise because every child is different for sure. I am just glad I don’t have so much anxiety over the small stuff. Thanks for commenting. 🙂

      Reply
  4. Trust your instinct every time, I remember trying to follow everyone else’s advice when my eldest was born but iI was so much happier (as was he0 when I trusted my own instinct instead

    Reply
    • So true, it took me a long time to figure this out and actually having a second baby really helped me understand what is most important and the not so important but helpful. Thanks for stopping by and commenting. Hope to see you again soon.

      Reply
  5. I think we do become more confident in our own abilities with each child, and apply more common sense. We know from experience what works for us and what is a load of old rubbish. x

    Reply
    • I agree Carin, sometimes we are flooded with “old rubbish” as you say too much at the start and because we don’t have experience we panic, try and we listen then the second comes along and we think, that was a load of old rubbish for sure and are confident enough to do our own thing. That’s the beauty of parenting we learn as we go, and then know how to go from there. If I had another I bet I would be even better the third time around.

      Reply

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.