I am going to warn you this is going to be one of those weird blogs where I somehow came to an epiphany about something. So last week has been pretty hard for me. Although I was given the opportunity for some me time with friends downtown weekend for the LGBTQ Pride Parade, this week just has me drained emotionally.
So for those of you who aren’t familiar with cognitive therapy, there is alway a plan put in place for when something gets you down or angry or whatever. So my plan has always been to listen to music, write, and or play video games. So I was in the middle of talking about happiness with a friend and I joking said, ” I keep hoping that I can my road will eventually lead to warms sands.” For those of you who don’t know, I am huge Skyrim fan. So much so that my for my birthday I want thieves guild tattoo ankle and dark brotherhood tattoo on my shoulder. I jokingly call myself that night mother who is the leader of the dark brotherhood. The warm stands saying is something that Khajiit, the cat people of Skyrim. All of a sudden it hit me. What if it wasn’t just a joke what if this was something I could live by or at least a meaningful saying.
Sayings or Mantras mean a lot to me because sometimes you don’t have a piece of paper or napkin isn’t around. Sometimes your iPhone is dead and there is no outlet. Sometimes you don’t the time or the luxury to veg out gaming or nerding out. When nothing else is available to combat those bad thoughts fight them with good thoughts. For me, the idea of sifting fine sand through your finger reminds me of home. Maybe I am cat person…. in both senses of the term ooooooooooooo. Either way, I am still the Night Mother.
So my son is 22 months old. He has gotten to the point where if he soils his diaper he tells me or tries to take it off. He will even pick up his own diaper and throws it away. So of course from time to time, I might mention this to a friend or two. So to my surprise, I received a lot of, “So you are going to potty train him right.”
I think what caught me off guard the most were the friends that didn’t have kids that were admint that it was time of me to start potty training. How does one who have never give birth to child all of sudden decide that a child is capable of knowing they are ready to to go to the potty. Now let me remind you… my son is a little over one in half and close to 2 years old or 24 months. Most girls start at around 2 and boys somehwere between 2 and half to 3 years old. Although my son is able to understand that his soiled diaper is not something you would like to keep in his room, he doesnt seem to understand the process before the soiled diaper. He knows during. He will hide himself. However there are still sometimes he will go and still keep playing. I just know he isnt ready yet.
But this isn’t about if my son is really to potty train as much as it is people feeling the the need to tell me how parent my child espcially people lacking the life experience. As if I am not potty training just beccause I like changing diapers. I know I am new mother. I am always look for ways to do things the right way. So I am open to sound suggestion… when I ask for it. Even if they did have experience I didn’t ask you for your input. And maybe that is rude but, its also rude to interject when no one ask you to.
I know I sound angry, but I bit perturbed. I don’t want to force my child to do something he isn’t ready for just only create self doubt in his abilities to do anything not just potty training. So I can say oh my son is already using the potty. Parenting isn’t just about hitting milestones and it especially isn’t about hitting them early.
Yes, I stress about being a mommy. A couple days ago I was walking to one of my best friends about my blogging situation. He is a hipster and will say it without any issue. Like most of my friends very childless and hoping to stay so. He asked me about things that I cared about as a mom. I started listing some things. Then he started listening something things. You know the outlandish stuff like essential oils ( which supposedly can make you or your kid really sick) and gluten. I started laughing.
Don’t get me wrong gluten is a serious thing… to kids gluten allergies. We all hear about that mom or see some form of them as characters in a TV show or movie. Still, to this day I don’t believe that kids should be vegetarians because of watching, “About a Boy.” But let’s be honest we have all been there. My irrational obsessive over parenting for awhile was fear of Autism that was constantly being brought up by my ex and his family. Which got slightly worse after my son’s pediatrician was worried about my son speech development. At 18 month my son only knew a handful of words such as hi, my sister’s name, my given name, and Duchess (our chihuahua). One of my close friends is Autistic, and I love him very much. No one wants their kid to have autism. I was obsessed with anything that could cause Autism. “Could be his diet… All the stress I had during my pregnancy… can gluten cause Autism.” I am joking about the gluten. 2 months later my son speaks in full phrases. In fact this morning he handed me my Xbox one controller and asked, ” Do you want this?” Maybe later I guess.
Again… don’t take it the wrong way. Mommy sense is the best thing ever. It what helps you know your kid is in danger. And not everyone gifted with mommy sense. Sometimes I wonder if I have strong enough Mommy sense. But sometimes in an attempt to keep kids safe we not only are going overboard but we are also harming them. You have heard it before and most people call it helicopter parenting. But I am not just talking about helicopter parenting. I am also talking stressing about every little thing. Do your research and maybe not microwave your kid’s food in plastic or recycle more. But don’t break out into a hot sweat over little stuff.
I am the oldest of four. I am 60 parts my father and 40 parts my mother. I can tell you neither of them knew how to deal with the person they helped create. Now, it’s sort of a given that parents have no clue what they are doing with their first child. Hell, I have no clue what I am doing. It’s sorta sad, because had they taken the time to actually listen and communicate effectively it would have saved everyone a lot of trouble. But… Let me tell you a story.
A couple of days ago my mom and I were having a conversation about her belief that turning the other cheek in certain situations or even apologizing. I told her she went about it all wrong. There was a certain situation in which my aunt got upset with me when I was 12 and cursed me out like a grown woman. My other aunt lied and said I had yelled at that swore at me. I called out for her to try to explain not yelled. But I was forced, not asked, to apologize to that aunt. I took it as my parents didn’t trust my word. I also internalized that as that I wasn’t worthy of respect. It wasn’t until I was an adult to work through the pain and anger that I didn’t even know I held on to that day.
However, the conversation got me to think about not just learning from my mistakes as a mother but my parents’ mistakes. I also learned I have to undo the mistakes I left behind with my son. This a growing person who is learning who they are. It’s my responsibility to make sure my son functions at a healthy emotional level. I don’t him turning 29 and realizing that he is acting out on a situation that happened to him over 15 years ago.
Don’t get me wrong. I love my parents. I also completely understand that working with the tools given to them by their parents. Let me tell you my grandparents are like a bag of knotted rubber bands. I think my parents did the best they could with what knowledge they had. I wish they would have handled it differently, but wishful thinking in the past gets us nowhere… on both sides.