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Life with young children can be challenging, but with the support and advice of friends, we can feel empowered and thankful for the blessing of being a Mom.

My musings are those of a self-proclaimed attachment-parenting Tiger mom, who juggles full-time mommying with a small (but growing!) baby-related business. I hope some of my thoughts help you
Enjoy your day, Enjoy your night, and Enjoy your kids!!!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Top 10 Myths (and Facts) of Being a (New) Mother:

1.     “You can have it all” Fact: We all have 24 hours in our day and cannot do more than our limited physical bodies can handle. However, you can find the right balance and re-prioritize to be happy with a new schedule, new relationships, and new sense of purpose. You may not have it all, but you can build a fulfilling new life.
2.     “When your baby is born, you will feel euphoric and amazed.” Fact: Women relate differently to a new baby and many face unforeseen emotional and physical challenges. Motherhood may not be what you thought, and you may need to consider a different lifestyle than you’d expected.
3.     “My pediatrician will be able to answer all of my questions.” Fact: Pediatricians are specialized to answer medical questions. They are no better trained in many parenting-related issues than anyone else in your social network. For answers to most parenting questions, turn to someone you respect and/or literature that can guide you to answers that fit your particular circumstances.
4.     “I’ll be able to take care of myself when my baby sleeps.” Fact: Most of the time, you will be cramming in WAY too much while your little prince or princess rests, and you will find that you don’t get as much done as you’d hoped. Plan simple, plan minimal, until you find the right balance.
5.     “My spouse will be my support.” Fact: Spouses want to support and do provide a certain amount of emotional and physical support. But they almost always fall short of your expectations. Beware of being overly critical and relax your demands. Be thankful of whatever support you get and turn to other friends, family, or hired-help to take care of the rest.
6.     “Babies and children are really expensive”. Fact: There are lots of gear, toys, clothes, and other baby items that are unnecessary, short-lived, or otherwise obtainable for free or less expensive online and through various community support networks. Having a new baby is a key life-changing event, and marketers and stores know it – they thrive on parents’ sense of needing new items. Be frugal and be careful not to overbuy and overload your budget unnecessarily. Check out your local church or other community resources for alternative ways to obtain what will be most helpful or needed.
7.     “I’ll always discipline right and be patient and understanding.” Fact: You will usually discipline the way you envision working best, but sometimes you will fall off-the-wagon and become the disciplinarian you swore you’d never be, saying things or doing things you thought you’d never do. That’s okay. You are a human and not an angel, and it’s healthy for your child to see you at your worst so that s/he knows that it’s normal to falter. Your child probably won’t remember when you are weakest, so just forgive yourself and strive for better next time.
8.     “My kids will not be the ones throwing tantrums in public places”. Fact: The only way this will be 100% true is if you never bring them out in public. Children get upset, and social graces are learned over time. Certain precautions will help minimize tantrums, but they will happen sometimes regardless of how well you prepare. Some precautions include: making sure your child is well rested (don’t go out during naptime), well fed (don’t go out during mealtime), and healthy (don’t go out if they have a cold).
9.     “A good parent will treat all of her children the same.” Fact: A good parent will actually treat her children differently, each according to his/her needs and sensitivities. Some children require more discipline, others “naturally” follow their parents and behave. Within the same family, some children need more attention, some are more physical, some are emotionally sensitive, etc. Some children will be diligent in school while others will be distracted. By treating all children the same, a parent is ignoring individual strengths and weaknesses. Thus, a good parent will actually treat her children differently.
10.   “My life won’t be so different – I’ll make sure my child fits my schedule and lifestyle.” Fact: A new child will have his or her own lifestyle needs and tendencies. The more a parent tries to “push” her agenda, the more likely a child will have emotional conflicts through his life. Having a child means compromising your own life in order to make room for someone else’s – it’s no longer just about you – it’s about a new “us”.


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