Can You Keep Your Sanity and Raise Kids?
Being a mom to two grown boys has been a huge blessing. But we’ve done all we can to instill our values and beliefs onto them. Now it’s time to let them fly. Or push them out of the nest. Whatever, it’s on them now. We did what we could as parents and so far (knocking on wood) we did it!
Now before we go any further, I do not claim to be a professional, doctor, therapist, etc. So all the info in this post is advice from an imperfect mom. No mother-of-the year awards here folks. But, here is my advice to new parents on keeping sane.
Advice on newborns. You will no longer sleep normally. Try to nap when and wherever you can. Keep telling yourself it’s just temporary. Crying is normal (for the baby too). If you are feeling depressed talk to your doctor! Post-partem depression is very common and very serious. Getting help ASAP will make things a lot easier.
Breast feeding. Either you do or you don’t. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. One of my kids wouldn’t do it and the other one did. We all survived and they are both healthy and happy!
Toddler Stage. This is where you batten down the hatches and lock down everything. Go ahead and put the phone number to poison control on the fridge and in your diaper bag. You will most likely use it at least once. My oldest licked the top of a comet cleaner can and liked it! He did it twice. That was after he broke into the cabinets with the child locks on it. This is also when I went on anxiety meds. They get into everything! Your job now is to watch them like hawks so forget about cleaning, showering, laundry, groceries. You can sleep when you die.
Elementary School Years. You thought you finished high school, college; maybe you have your masters. All that no longer matters! You will rue the day you thought you would never use algebra again. You are about to feel the biggest failures helping your child do homework till he graduates high school. I have no advice here except become friends with your child’s teachers. Take them coffee and gifts. Just trust me on this.
Middle School Years. If you have girls, the drama is about to begin. Lots of crying and anguish over boys. If you have boys, things will start to smell strange in your house. Boys begin to shut you out and they only answer, “I don’t know” a lot. Time to start doing a moms or dads night out. Date night too. Get sitters. You need to get away from the middle schoolers at least once a week even if it means dinning at McDonalds. If you don’t get ‘me’ time, you will slowly start to look like one of those crazy people on any Lifetime movie on TV.
High School. You will start to feel freedom again! They can drive; do their own homework for the most part. Can babysit younger kids. They don’t clean their rooms though and if you give them a car, everything will be in their back seat that they can’t find in the house. But enjoy this stage if you can. It goes really fast.
Keeping up with other Moms. This is going to be your biggest issue. Moms will want to compete with you. Their kids are faster, smarter, prettier, healthier and better than your kid. Stay away from these moms. They will make you feel so inferior and crummy. All kids are different and learn at different rates. They all have different gifts and talents too. Don’t be fooled by those moms. They have issues.
Just a little more advice here to young/new parents. You don’t have to head the PTA or be the room mom. You can help out when you feel you can. Don’t overwhelm yourself. Your job is to raise that beautiful child. Let them learn lessons the hard way. Let them be bored. Teach them to do chores and value money. Teach them about nature and the value of life. Tell them it’s ok to fail but to learn from that failure. Teach them the value of education and empathy. Keep communicating with your child at every age. You can do this parents! If I did it, anyone can!