Ever since becoming pregnant, I see babies and pregnant ladies everywhere. Not sure if there were always this many floating around, or if all of a sudden they came out of the woodwork once I announced my pregnancy? Yes. That seems likely.
I've also been noticing parents in public and parent friends of mine, as far as how they interact and react to their children. I see a lot of what I DO NOT want to do. For example:
- Being completely engrossed in my cell phone while my child plays/wants attention from me
- Giving my child my cell phone (or their own?!) to keep busy while adults finish dinner at a restaurant
- Try to reason with them when they are having a fit
- Allowing them to throw a fit in a public place for longer than it takes to remove them from said place (Target, grocery store, restaurant, etc.)
- Constantly comparing my kid to other kids as if my kid was the first ever to poop, cry, smile, walk, whatever
- Say one thing, do another
- Become completely consumed with my child so that I am incapable of focusing on or doing anything else, and unaware of how stressful and suffocating that must be for the kid
Of course, I have also seen many things other parents do that I absolutely want to do:
- Take walks as a family
- Wear baby on either parent as often as needed
- Breastfeed whenever needed (including in public, with appropriate cover up)
- Say no to my kid
- Be relaxed about my childs wellbeing and allow others to hold him/her, feed him/her, etc.
- Be thankful for any help I get with my childs care, and not critique it
- Take everything as it comes, and try to not get hung up on preconceived ideas of child rearing if they don't work for us
- Make time for ME
- Make time for me and husband
- Remember that not everyone feels the same way about my kid as I do (some people don't like kids)
- Laugh together as often as possible
- Remember that growth and struggle for baby is growth for mama
I know it's easy to type this stuff out now without a zillion hormones raging through my body, or the feelings of unending love for my child have kicked in. My intent is to get this stuff out there, so I can come back in a few months an remind myself of my pre-child thoughts. Of course I know many of my "do nots" I could end up doing, as I discover what exactly leads to doing those things.
My biggest hope for us as parents is that we can be easy going and not stressed out over every little thing. I know, easier said than done, especially for first time parents. I also want to remind myself that babies are very resilient, moms are very resilient, and everything will work out. It always does.