I sent my mom an email this weekend of Dog wearing Baby’s hat and informed her that starting now we would be letting Dog and Baby share everything. Sharing is caring.
I also told her that we don’t want Dog to feel like a second fiddle to Baby and want to encourage a loving relationship between the two.
My mother responded with “GROSS!!!! Don’t want to see Dog in diapers or Baby looking for a vacant spot on the lawn”.
Babe and I decided to take Baby and Dog to a large forest for an afternoon walk.
When we returned from our outdoor adventure I responded to my mothers email with the following message:
Baby and Dog will be taking turns using the crib.
My parents knew that we had gone out to the forest with Dog and Baby…
We picked leaves that Baby looked at today to help her with her entry in her feelings journal.
‘How I felt walking through the forest…’
‘What this leaf reminds me of emotionally…’
‘Was I really at peace in the forest of was I just feeling the pressure from my parents to act like I loved the fresh air and I really didn’t like it by I can’t express myself fully yet?”
My mothers response:
I felt my work there had been done so I allowed the emails to end there. 😉
A little history to give you some perspective on my parents…
Babe may say that my parents, more my mother than my father, are a little pushy. He may not use the word pushy so much as domineering or controlling and he may not be referring to both my parents and solely my mother, but for argument’s sake we will use the terms pushy and parents. I am the youngest of their three children and I am the one that just does what
my mother they says. Frankly, it’s a lot easier than fighting her them, I’ve learned this lesson the hard way and again, I’m too tired to fight anymore. The stress will kill me or cause me to break out. I’m not cool with either.
My parents went to see that new Billy Crystal/Bette Midler movie a couple of weeks ago – Parental Guidance. My mother *suggested* that I go and see this movie too. Like the good daughter I am, I obliged and took Baby to the movies*. My parents have been watching my Brother and Sister in law allow their children to rule their home. I am not sure if my niece or nephew have ever heard the word “no”, and if they have, I’m not sure if they truly understand what it means. Our poor Baby will not have the same luxury as her cousins. Babe and I have had the privilege to learn a few lessons on how we don’t want to parent and the importance of consistency from watching my Brother and Sister in law.
*The movie theatre runs a program called “Stars and Strollers” which allows babies/toddlers and parents to enjoy movies with softer sound! It’s an amazing program and makes you feel like you’re human when you’re a new mom.
Parental Guidance is all about how new generation of parents have let their children call the shots and how parents don’t want to harm a child by saying no but using “consider the consequences” instead. It shows new parents as too soft when it comes to discipline and that children need rules and to be told no from time to time. I may agree with some of these “old-fashioned” parenting styles. I do recognize that we are all different and what works for my family may not work for other families. However, I found myself laughing throughout this movie – which is always fun – but noticed that in a theater with about 10 other parents, I was the only one laughing. Does this mean I am alone in my beliefs? Don’t children need structure, rules, and someone to say no to them in order to grow into competent adults?
Anyway, I called my parents after seeing the movie and told my parents that the movie really spoke to me and that I would be instituting some changes for 15 week old Baby. They seemed quite pleased with this, as I know they assumed that I would learn some good parenting lessons about rules, structure and saying no. Little did they know that I was on to their plan.
I let them know that Babe and I were going to start Baby finger painting this weekend as we felt that she needed an avenue to express herself as she cannot do that verbally yet. I also let them know that we would create a feelings journal for her so that she could let out the stresses and pressures she feels out in a productive way, and of course it would be on recycled paper. I also let them know that Babe and I were no longer going to use the word “no” as we have agreed that it’s too harsh and may stifle Baby in her emotional development and that we wanted her to live freely in this world. My parents were a little stunned. Then I added that Babe and I wanted Baby to grow up making her own decisions and that we would follow her lead, let her decide how life should be.
This is how I deal with their pressure and their need to control.
My father got on the phone and told me to F@*# off 🙂 I don’t think that we’ve laughed harder.
Now I’m slightly worried that Baby will inherit my wit and it will be quicker than mine…
Am I in trouble or what?!