My biggest parenting lessonJune 24, 2015
Parenting was going to be fun… I had it all planned. I was stockpiling ideas and activities long before the little strip showed a baby was due. I knew I had many a parenting lesson to learn but that was half the adventure. I recognised ‘fun’ did not equate to easy, and that some moments may feel like ‘fun’ had never existed, but still I planned in shades of giggles. I read up about stockpiling, filling the closet and freezer, even found patterns for home made kids clothes.
Then it happened. I was holding a little effigy of ourselves, a baby of our own… and nothing fit. The first clothes dwarfed him, actually very little we had fit. The cloth nappies fell off, the feeding tops were clicked down for a pump and the little wooden rocking crib was too draughty. All the picture perfect scenario’s crumbled to parenting reality. The bar was raised, the pregnancy e-mails turned to ones about how I should have waited before the cord was cut and potty trained in the first weeks. Suddenly planning became serious and then it didn’t.
I quit planning and just dreamt,
concentrated on today and it’s needs… and found real joy in it.
Spring coming really brought it home – I have a beautiful snow suit he will never wear and outfits washed but once. Now I only buy clothes half a size bigger than he is at the time, toys he takes an interest in when we show him in the shop. I’ve sewn him a bib, frozen excess home made baby food, nothing big. It doesn’t mean we aren’t frugal, or immensely grateful for the hand me downs and gifts that fill the bottom drawer, but it does cut down on waste. If I fall in love with something in a shop we’re using it before the weeks out, knowing we needed it before it was paid for.. plus I get to fully ride out the ‘new stuff’ wave.
Laying the planning down wasn’t easy, but renaming it to dreams allowed me to stop thinking about tomorrow, really enjoy today and all the fun it may bring.