In parenting, there are always contradictions. The battle between fostering independence in your child and actually getting things done; finding that activity that just makes them so happy and calm vs the guilt for letting them play on YouTube most the day; and the desire to give the child ice cream and cake vs the lactose intolerance and gluten sensitivity. Our struggle is between the stubborn consistency of routine the boy has vs his love of spontaneity and taking off on a whim. While he knows I’m to be driving him to his Occupational Therapist every Thursday at 10:30 am, and if I’m not there with the car-where ever HE is-at 10:30 there IS screaming, wailing, and gnashing of teeth and everyone in the area is saddened and feels helpless…any other time of day or night, if I say, “you want to go somewhere?” He’s dressed with shoes, and listing, sometimes in detail, exactly the places he wants to go….and what he wants to look at while he’s there.
I pat myself on the back for his adaptability. With my first child, after stocking up on the 6 way convertible diaper bag/playmat/solar powered mini-fridge and appointment planner with 7 kinds of butt cream and a pack of wipes and garbage bags and 2 changes of clothes and spare bottles and mini-packs of baby food and juice and several toys and a spare cellphone and a blankie and ……. so much more stuff the experts said I needed….I remembered how my mother raised me – She’d shove a clean diaper in her back pocket and we’d roll – So…it’s how I raised my kids. It makes me happy to see my kids grew up to be flexible and adaptable. If you ask one of them “What’s wrong?”, most likely you’ll hear “Nothings wrong, I just have to figure this out”. And I just smile and accept the “I rock at parenting” fistbump I give myself.
But I have a confession to make – this parenting style is how I operated long before I had kids. I’m not a DayRunner Trapper-Keeper kinda girl. I’ve finally learned in the last year how to write things down so I don’t forget them, but keeping a schedule has never been my strong suit. If I try to plan things, I get caught up in the details, and before you know it, a simple quick trip to the grocers to get milk becomes something just short of a broadway production – I need a script, and choreography, and a detailed map to the store, and shopping lists in triplicate cross referenced with coupons and savings card deals and then it becomes a trip to 6 different stores to get the best price on peanut butter and toilet paper, then more maps and choreography because somehow now I’ve decided to go to the wholesale club too and after a few hours of spinning about the trip, I give up and replan the menu around non-dairy choices, turn on Netflix and zone out. So I avoid planning as much as possible.
Even with this blog…I do not plan. My writing style is basically mind to keyboard. I would love to post regularly, ultimately 3 times a week right now. I’d also like to do yoga every morning and get a pedi once a month. I’ve perused some “blogger how to” sites, that stress that I should be posting at certain intervals and writing about certain topics but I feel I have to be honest with you, my readers, and say loudly that ain’t gonna happen. I’m just not into writing up a bunch of prefab posts and setting a timer for them to be deployed at the proper intervals. If that was the style I wanted, I’d get a job on a commercial blog or something. So you guys get what bubbles up from my muse – when it bubbles up. I am making attempts at organizing my time better as I’ve found for me that keeping busy keeps the ghosts and demons away. Here’s to more demon free days in the future.
Be gentle with yourself. You know how to take care of you. You’ll get there.