Monday, March 5, 2012

You mean I actually have to 'parent' now?

It's no secret that we did not exactly 'plan' on our little baby Button. It's not that we didn't want kids, it's just that...well...we weren't exactly thinking about it almost exactly one year ago, when I got pregnant(wow, that's weird to think about). Nevertheless, and much better for it, here we are. I have an almost 3 month old gorgeous daughter. She lights up every day, makes my world better and brings me so much joy and laughter sometimes I am overwhelmed(in a good way of course).
So imagine my surprise when it dawned on me that I have to make some decisions about how to parent her! Now I realize that she is pretty young but isn't that the time to really get started?
So many decisions to make. What kind of parent do I want to be? Do I want to read a book to tell me or go on my instincts? Natural or not? Attached or independent? Should she learn another language? I'm gonna need to learn how to braid hair!
Let it be known, I have not subscribed to any parenting style so I may not know exactly what I am talking about. I am only going on our experience.
Without realizing it, I did end up doing a lot of what is referred to as "attachment parenting". I breast feed on demand and refuse, at this point, to let her "cry it out". That said, she has slept in her own room since she was 3 weeks old and I let her hang in her swing while I do stuff around the house.
I am not sure if I will allow her to dictate when the weaning will begin but I do know I am pumped to give her her first taste of avocado and cinnamon applesauce!
I know I want her to love animals so we never kept Tootsie away from her. She has already gotten her first scratch(way to go Mother of the Year!).
We also decided early on that we would not create a quiet world just for her. The world is a noisy place and she better get used to it. Do we still sometimes tip toe around and whisper while she naps? Of course. But I still accidentally bang pots and pans, leave the tv on and yes, the dog will bark...and we don't really sweat it.
Right now we are slowly working on a schedule. Evie Sue has naturally fallen into a habit of one 3 hour nap a day. What time that nap happens varies but hey, I'll take it! She also tends to hit the sack between 9:30 and 10:30 pm.
And I talk to her...all the time! I read somewhere that you should narrate everything, all day long. So I do. Well for the most part. To be able to read an actual book I've found it works really well to read to her. Right now she is hearing a very upbeat version of The Hunger Games.
A wise friend also told me to play music that we enjoy. We didn't have to lock ourselves into a world filled with singalong baby tunes that make us want to rip our ears drums out after the one millionth play. She will enjoy what we expose her to. So what do we expose her to? Everything! Showtunes, reggae, classical, heavy metal and Motown to name a few.
We are working on getting her to recognize her hands right now as well as just a little bit of tummy time.
There is SO much!
I don't know a lot about parenting...yet. I feel that while books can tell me where to begin it is up to me to take the steps. Steps to making sure my little girl is happy, healthy, kind-hearted, super funny, free spirited and independent while still being in love with her mom and dad.
Should be no problem. Here we go...


Karen said...

You need to write a book!!!

Kristi said...

I love your philosophy and will be much the same when finally given the chance :)

Laura said...

The best way to parent is to just do what feels right. Kids pretty much dictate things and you can always tell by the way they act towards something whether it is good or not. Each child is different and there is not book out there that can tell you exactly how to raise your own child. Just trust in yourself and your child to lead the way to becoming a great parent. Sounds like you are already doing perfect. :) Hugs!

Your cousin,