Parenting is so much easier before you have kids.
Before I had Elijah there were so many things I said I would and wouldn’t do. And I know most of my baby-less friends are the same and have these ideas in their head on how they’re going to raise their tribe. I think it’s good to think about these things in advance but sometimes it doesn’t always go to plan. Or you realise how unpractical those ideas were. So I thought I’d write a list and laugh about my delusional pre baby parenting goals!
I was adamant I wouldn’t bed share because I was terrified of rolling over and hurting Elijah or worse. When he was about 4 months old he wouldn’t settle in his cot and I discovered there were guidelines for safe bed sharing. He’s been in our bed ever since. He now no longer has a “bed room” and his room is now just for his toys and books. We have dismantled the cot and got rid of our bed frame. We’ve put the mattress on the floor to allow him to get on and of it safely. We all sleep much better with this arrangement (most of the time!)
I mentioned this on my previous post. I just couldn’t be arsed with cloth nappies. And look at me now. A complete addict. The prints are so cute!
I actually think I am stricter than some mamas when it comes to Elijah’s diet. But before we started weaning I had it in my head that he would eat only fresh organic food every meal, every day. No junk, no sweets and no juice. All I have to say to myself about that is HAHAHA. Don’t get me wrong, I’m conscious with his meals. I make sure there’s a good mix. But he definitely has treats. At a party I’ll always let him have some birthday cake. He likes little rice pudding pots too. And he LOVES Party Rings and Oreos. He has a sweet tooth like his mama. All in moderation!
TV / Screen Time
Okay so the recommendation is that under 2s have absolutely NO screen time. I was massively against letting Elijah watch TV but as the months went by I realised just how unpractical this was. Sometimes you do need a breather before you have a total break down. So when my little cherub was having a meltdown and Mr tumble would calm him down. So be it! It’s the same as junk food for me. All in moderation. And I try not to let him watch total mind numbing shit. I like the educational shows on Cbeebies. And Elijah often falls asleep to a YouTube video of Peter and the Wolf. His favourite is Mary Poppins. He loves the songs. Now that he is getting older I am making a point of having “no TV days” where we listen to music or audio books instead while playing. But Mr Tumble will always be number 1 for Eli!
Loosing my identity
When I was pregnant I felt like it would be such a horrible thing to loose my identity and no longer be “Lauren”. I thought being defined as just a “mam” would be the worst thing in the world. I didn’t actually think myself to be the type of person who would spend days a baby groups chatting about bodily fluids over a cuppa. And goodness me I would NEVER be one of those “mummy bloggers”. Well…. things have certainly changed. And it wasn’t long before I realised that although I am doing all of these things. I haven’t lost my identity. I’ve found it. Becoming Elijah’s mother is who I was meant to be. If I asked someone to define me, and they said “mother” that would be the biggest compliment you could give me.
I guess the point of this post is just a message to new mamas and mamas-to-be. Sure, make plans, have a think about how you want to raise your little cub. But don’t feel disheartened if things don’t go to plan or if you change your “style” along the way. It normally works out for the better. Trust your instincts and enjoy all of the ups and downs of parent hood.