Tuesday, 18 January 2011

A diet of hat

I think eating hats would be considered a little too much fibre for a healthy diet but it seems that since Ella was born I have eaten many.
I spent quite a few years before we had Ella thinking about becoming a parent, spending time with friends and family who had young kids and reading lots of books. I felt quite embarassed about being so obsessed but now I also think it set me up well for the journey of becoming a parent.

However, like so many things in life, the reality is very different from the fantasy. I spent a lot of time observing others and saying to myself "I would never do that", or "they should do this", or "my child will never be like that". God has a great sense of humour because almost every day I have to admit that I was wrong and that I didn't know anything. The harshest voice of judgment is often your own and it is even harsher when you know you have judged others for doing what you are doing. The difference now though is that I get why.

It is a wonderful lesson to learn that observation is a precious thing and I am so grateful for all the time I had to learn from other parents and from the books I read. But judging others and their children just becomes a bitter weapon you use upon yourself and your child. It leaves a bad taste in my mouth and strips the joy out of life.

I am a harsh critic, mainly of myself. But parenting is a rolling and ever moving feast. You cannot plan for every eventuality and each child is their own person doing their own thing. I am enjoying the freedom of realising you never know what is round the corner or what challenges may present themselves but intentions don't have to be a decision and you can be free to choose again and again how you will respond to your child or a situation. The toughest part is letting myself and not reproaching myself about it.

Parenting and perfectionism are not happy bedfellows. A friend said to me when I was pregnant that her favourite phrase as a Mum is " Never say never". I should have that tatooed somewhere!

1 comment:

  1. I agree, except I would NEVER get a tattoo! :-)