What We Thought We Knew About Parenting

Monday, August 1, 2016

We were married for a long time before we had Mason, and along the way, we made a lot of friends with a lot of kids. Because we were around so many kids, we really thought we knew it all. Though we loved our friends, we would sometimes have conversations about their parenting styles, and what we would and wouldn't do with our kids. Boy, how we have turned a 180. Mason's totally whooped our butt, and everything we said we wouldn't do, we have done. And everything we said we would do, we haven't really done. So take it from us, and shut your mouth, you people with no kids. You don't know better! Haha!

1. Bathing my kids everyday. I bathe everyday (mostly...) so why shouldn't my kids? They're running around in the yard, in the lake water, on the beach, on the playground, and even around the house. Sweating up a storm, stinky and all. Needless to say, I avert my eyes to this one. Some days, I'm just exhausted. Other days, Mason's exhausted and a bath is just not going to happen. He's not always the most pleasant smelling child, but we are all happy, and that is all that matters. Studies even suggest that bathing kids everyday is not ideal health wise. So, I'm off the hook!

2. No iPhone, iPad, or TV. Who am I kidding? Mason is just now napping because he got so tired of watching YouTube on his iPhone (yes, he has an iPhone - it's my old phone). We've resorted to the iPhone when he's going crazy in the car from a longer road trip, when he can't sleep at night and we are just exhausted, etc. I admit, he gets more screen time than recommended, but hey, he's a pretty bright kid and he gets a good amount of attention from Daddy and Mommy, and lots of outside time with our cousins close by and at playgroup.

3. Speaking Hmong. I quite felt strongly about this. I wanted my child to be fluent in speaking Hmong since he's half Hmong. I felt like all the Hmong parents were doing their children a disservice by not being diligent about teaching their kids Hmong. What are my own plans for teaching Mason Hmong? Zero. Do I still have hopes and dreams of teaching Mason Hmong? Yes! I have no idea how it's going to work out, but I've realized, I'm not a teacher, I don't know how to plan lessons and programs, and I'm okay with my best efforts. As of right now, he knows how to count to 10 in Hmong, and previously, we were learning where his nose, eyes and head was in Hmong, but we've been slacking so I'm not sure if he still remembers.

4. Keeping My Decorating Style. I really felt like my children needed to bend to my will when it came to home decorations. Glass, sharp edges, they'll learn. Or so I told myself. We bought a house last year, and if I didn't have kids, there would be a lot of things that I would have bought or wouldn't have bought. Let's say that we've bended to Mason's will. His little curious fingers are on everything. The first thing he does when he comes into a room is scan the whole room, and he notices everything. Guitars, bugs, shiny objects. He has some sort of magnet that makes him attracted to the things that you don't want him to be attracted to. And I'm okay with that. He's learning, and instead of placing things that would be entice him, I just put these things away, or be okay with his curiosity. I'm okay that my home isn't winning any interior design award. It's working for us, and we're all okay with that.

5. A Clean Home. Ahhhh, the ultimate luxury of a stay at a home mom. The other day we were cleaning and Brandon was complaining about why our house was so dirty. Well, it's dirty because there are people living in it! Messes get made everyday. Some days, I'll bend down and clean it up. Other days, my back kills me, and I don't worry about it. Sometimes, we are in a rush, and we don't pick it up until days later. Well, what about at night after he goes to sleep? You seriously think I'm going to use that time to clean up?!!! Nope. We do our best, and though Brandon wishes we could have a cleaner home, it is pretty darn clean for having a messy toddler. And at the end of the day, I rather spend time with Mason then using that time to clean up after him.

6. Being On Time. I have to admit, this is something I'm consistently working on with no kids. Add in a child, and boy, we are lucky to be within the hour. Are we always late? No, but remembering all of Mason's things and snacks and drinks and cars, that takes time. And of course, who hasn't gotten ready, only to have your child needing a diaper change? Or a break down? Or needing that one toy that is upstairs, under the bed? 

7. Being A Stylish Mom. I've always thought I would be that pulled together mom. Am I? Nope. And I'm honestly okay with that. I don't wear silk. I don't choose a lot of white tops or tops that are intricate. I wear clothes that are comfortable, and I can get dirty because I have a little boy and I rather be happy than stressed out that my clothes are ruined.

I'm constantly learning, and compromising. Marriage itself meant compromising, and adding a kid into the mix meant more compromise. And honestly, I'm more happy than I've ever been. I've learned to live in the moment, to be okay with the messes, that Mason still loves me despite a dirty house. I've also learned that I can't judge anyone else. We all have bad days. We all have hard days. The next time you want to judge a parent, lend a hand instead. There is no perfect parent. We are all just trying our best. And if you don't believe me, you'll get yours!!! (evil laugh). ;)


1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing. Very useful!
    Good vibes, FOX
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