This guest post comes from Megan who’s awesome blog is Rockabye Bucktown. Some more great posts to check out are Baby Gear 101, Food For Picky Eaters – Because deodorant is in a food group all by itself, and The Active Mom. Megan has a little bit of everything on her blog so go on over and say hi!
I was always the “teacher’s pet” type. You know, the one that raised her hand incessantly in class and did extra credit if my grade was on the cusp of an A- (insert eye roll). This behavior has followed me around my entire life – throughout college, grad school, my career, planning my wedding (fortunately, I also married someone just like me who accepted borderline OCD and insanity), and definitely carrying a child.
I say “carrying” instead of “raising” a child. Because all of that excessive research and associated craziness stopped when my little guy entered this world and overachieving seemed meaningless and insignificant.
Of course, we tried applying ALL of the knowledge that we read about for the previous nine months. And some of it worked. But you know what? A lot of it didn’t. There’s not manual when it comes to raising a child. I read books on “what to expect” and raising “happy, healthy babies.”
When I was told (by an author, no one that I actually knew) that my son should no longer be eating baby food, I stopped feeding him purees and started feeding him table food. He starved and woke up every night crying. Um, who is benefiting here? Not two weeks later, he started pushing the mashed sweet potatoes away and attempted the chopped cucumbers (and yes, my kid loves cucumbers, who would have thought?).
When the book told me that he was “supposed to be using a spoon by now”, I shoved one in his hand and gave it a whirl (I am still cleaning up that yogurt mess). But upon giving him a fork instead, he thrived, eagerly plunging it at his watermelon and shoveling it in his mouth. Don’t even get me started about taking the bottle away from your one year old…ain’t no way that’s happening any time soon.
While this may not be news to anyone that has toddlers or older children, it was an epiphany for me. I donated most of those “productive parenting” books and want to set fire to the rest. You know what makes my guy “happy and healthy?” Goldfish crackers and Thomas the Train. Every single day.
Next week, it may be animal crackers and Sesame Street. Who cares? As long as he is smiling and loving life, I am doing something right (regardless of what baby author approves).
Come visit me and my adventures as a SAHM at Rockabye Bucktown.