Saturday, March 3, 2012

Parenting, what a big moutain to climb

Ok, I admit.  I wrote this post a looooong time ago and totally forgot about it.  It is still valid though and wanted to get it up here.  So here goes . . .

Up until now, I thought that being a Mom was fairly easy. If you think about it, your main goal as a Mom is to keep your child alive. Break that down and all you really have to worry about is sleeping, eating and keeping your child healthy. Of course those three things are huge and I’m not going to discount all of the issues with getting your infant to sleep through the night, getting your toddler to eat a normal meal, or just getting your child through winter without heading to the ER, never mind any bigger health issues. These issues are real.

Of course as a Mom, you are also responsible for how your child grows and learns. Let’s face it though, with all of the education tools out there for infants and toddlers, it is a pretty easy job. Everything that your child needs to learn in the first few years of life, are things that come second nature to you as an adult. The challenge begins once your child has mastered the art of learning. It is now up to you as a Mom, to make sure your child is learning the right things. It is up to you to make sure that your child is not learning the wrong things. I know, I know, this is not new information, but seriously? Have you thought about it at all and what exactly that MEANS to you as a parent??

I am a Mom of a three and a half year old. She goes to school, she meets people, she makes decisions, and she does much of this all on.her.own. Yikes! I am totally excited about her growing into a responsible and independent person, but I have realized that I need to start making decisions on how I am going to raise her. Like, important decisions! And yeah, maybe I think too much, but hey, that is just what I do. So here are a few goals of mine and the dilemma’s that I am struggling with . . .

1. GOAL: keep CC safe from strangers that might want to do harm (STRANGER DANGER)

Dilemma: I want her to be a friendly person. I don’t want her to be afraid to talk to people. I like that my children wave and say hi to people as they walk by, but I also need to keep them safe. Trying to figure out how to teach her about strangers and not hinder that friendliness is not an easy task.

2. GOAL: teach her not to “tattle-tale”

Dilemma: I want her to tell me when there is a potential issue with her sister. For example, if Gwen is playing with something that could hurt her, I want to know about it. I think in general, if CC learns to take care of her sister or look out for her best interest, it will help her grow into a responsible and caring person. At the same time, I don’t want her to get the wrong idea and think it is a good idea to tell on others when they are doing something “wrong”. So, I have to teach her to distinguish “wrong” from something that could cause harm. And even further still, a harmless wrong like eating an extra cookie is totally different from throwing Daddy’s Google TV controller in the toilet.

3. GOAL: teach her to be respectful of others and follow directions

Dilemma: I want my daughter to speak properly to adults. I want her to be respectful and to occasionally say “Yes Sir”, “No Ma’am” when it is appropriate. I want her to listen and to follow directions, but I don’t want her to grow up always following. I want her to learn to be a leader and to realize that she does have her own opinions and ideas. I want her to be confident and learn to think through things herself. I want her to learn to negotiate and also to please others but not by always giving in. These are complicated ideas, I know. These are not the kind of things you can teach a three year old, probably not even a ten year old. But, these are the things in the back of my mind. How do I teach her to obey me without teaching her to just obey? Is this the feminist in me speaking? Maybe. But, I don’t want her to be some robot that just does what she is told all of the time. Yet I also don’t want her to be a wild child that does whatever she wants, whenever she wants.
I could go on and on with these goals of mine, but I won’t. I just want to put it out there that I am now aware that this parenting stuff is going to get more challenging as the children get older. I don’t even want to think about those teenage years!

With two girls so close in age, I would assume that there will be no learning time in between what I teach CC and what I teach Gwen. Gwen is already so advanced and picking up things I never would have expected a child of her age to pick up. I have a feeling I am going to be teaching both of them life’s lessons at the same time. I only hope that I can get it right the first time, because I don’t know if there will be a second time. Of course two more children thrown into the mix (hopefully, one day!) may change things completely. I guess we’ll see!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Have something to say? Leave a comment for this post.