8 Things I have learnt so far in my parenting journey
After a long hiatus that was necessary. I am going to stroll in here and act like I never left. How are you all? I hope you have been keeping well. Can you believe that I have managed to nurture and care for a baby for 12 whole months? A full year. I am in disbelief and so proud of myself. Especially since the said baby is thriving, happy and becoming increasingly independent every day. Most of the time I have absolutely no clue what I am doing, but instincts and doing my level best to do what is best for my little family seems to be working out just fine.
They say the first year in a child’s life is the provides the most exponential growth period in anyone’s life, adolescence coming a close second. The physical, mental, and emotional growth is nothing short of astounding. This is a period of so much growth for the parent as well as I can honestly say that I have really evolved as a person in the last 12 months. Here is some new perspective I have gathered as a parent so far:
- Patience is an acquirable trait: An importantw gem I picked up early enough is that babies are sponges and mirrors. They will soak up your emotions and feelings and mirror them right back at you. The more you get frustrated at a baby that wont stop crying, the more they cry. Your agitation at the baby not going down for his nap only causes him to get upset too and stay up even longer. So, with all my impatience, and I may still not have enough patience for those who are not my children, I had to learn to be patient and calm when everything within me screams to be the opposite.
- Take time to appreciate the little things: Experiencing even the most mundane of things from a baby’s perspective is perhaps the most beautiful thing that has ever happened to me. The excitement of seeing something move past his eye, or recognition of a new sound, the pride he has when he discovers a new skill or just the way he loves looking back at his reflection. There are a million things that bring joy to him and in turn bring joy to me. I find myself in turn finding joy in the simplest things in my life and I am happier for it.
- Life does not run out of firsts. You may miss a first with your child but there are so many more firsts to come, there is so much to experience. Plus, as obvious as it may sound, realize that I have so many more firsts left now, and not just as far as parenting is concerned. I had just stopped paying attention.
- Parenting Olympics is a real thing: You either voluntarily sign up or someone somewhere will sign you up. Parents are such a competitive bunch with an innate desire to be a better parent that the next. Your milestones will go up on a scoring board, your struggles are because of your ‘shortcomings’. Worst part about parenting Olympics is that you cannot win. So, I just choose to hear it as white noise and just live my life.
- It is Ok to be vulnerable: I have always been the strong person in most situations. I do not crack easily. Here is the thing that I wish more people would admit, parenting can be tough, it can kick your behind so hard at times, emotionally drain you and leave you feeling inadequate. I have learnt that it is Ok to admit when you feel overwhelmed. It is Ok to ask for help and that feeling all of these does not make me a bad parent.
- A baby’s love is so pure and true: I once watched a John Legend interview, and he said that babies have it easy. Parents love them for simply existing. They do not have anything to earn that love, they are born and we love them. Everyone else must earn love. How true is that? Even we as parents must earn our babies’ love. All the love we giving, taking care of them ensuring their well being is what earns that love. Seeing them express this love is quite something! It melts your heart. Makes all the effort you have put in just worthwhile. Did I mention my baby gives me the best hugs and slobbery kisses? Well, I just did 😊
- A little selfishness is good for everyone: To offer the best as a human in general, self-care is important. Even more so when you are a parent. If it is spending time away from your child(ren) for a while, sleep training so that you can get a full night’s rest or whatever it is you need to do to function like a proper human being, do it. Ignore anyone who tries to tell you, you are being selfish and you should put your kids first always. A happy you will make a better parent.
- You must keep evolving: The best analogy I can give this far for parenting is a video game. You concur a level and pat yourself on the back for all the skills you have acquired and a new, tougher level that require you to improve your skills will be unlocked. You just must keep evolving and learn while at it or better put as one Mama Dylan put it,” just keep winging it till they are adults and they are responsible for their own screw ups”.
To more learning and taking joy in the little things, as I strive to not let the cobwebs fill up my space 😉