MamaBlogger365 – Keep the Expectations Low by Kelli Stapleton

If you’re reading this blog post I already know you. You are a tech-savvy, smart, awesome parent (like me!). And with awesomeness such as ours, we have awesome responsibilities. Responsibility #1 is raising our children to reach their full potential (or more than their full potential, if I have my way about it). This starts in utero.

When you were pregnant, how many things on this list can you relate to?

  • Take your prenatal vitamins no matter how much you vomit or how constipated you become
  • Limiting sugar intake
  • No caffeine
  • No cold or cough meds regardless of misery
  • Sleeping on the left side because it’s best for baby and ironically most miserable for you.
  • Playing classical music to your bump even though you prefer Nickleback (don’t judge me)
  • Eating vegetables regularly
  • Reading voraciously so you can be prepared once baby is liberated from the uterus

How about once the baby is here? What are the ways we can ensure our baby will reach Ivy League preschool status?

  • Putting them on a strict schedule
  • Reading to them
  • Tummy time
  • Having highly-researched, scientific toys to stimulate brain development while they drool on them
  • Teaching them sign language
  • Playing classical music to your baby even though you prefer Nickleback (don’t judge me)
  • Never putting them in front of the television
  • Teaching them a second language

And I could go on, and on, and on. I’m not EVEN going to mention the baby flash cards I got for my kids (hangs head in shame).

It was right about here where my perfect parenting plan became derailed. We had a disaster of such monumental proportions that our family went into “survival mode”. I know most of you can relate to that. Where you just try to get through the day and make sure everyone is fed and reasonably clothed. Sometimes when one is in “survival mode”, there are moments of great clarity.

I ACTUALLY had one of those moments!

That moment was this: That loving my children was enough. All the other stuff really didn’t matter. They had food, shelter, and lots and LOTS of love. My children were already better off then millions of other children all over the world, and even some in my own neighborhood. They weren’t being raised in war-torn Somalia. They aren’t living in earthquake destroyed Haiti. They aren’t being abused in any way. I was doing enough, even when I thought it was the bare minimum.

So moms, if you’re feeling the pressure to raise your kids a certain way or you’re paying for private sport coaching for your toddler or if you’re putting flash cards in front of your two-week-old baby; remember this: you are doing your job as a parent by loving your child (baby, toddler, or teen). Take some pressure off yourself. Lower YOUR expectations of what perfect parenting looks like and just enjoy and love those kids.

Kelli Stapleton

Producer/Host
Birth Stories on Demand
www.birthstoriesondemand.com

 

The Museum Of Motherhood is the first and only facility of its kind, celebrating the “her”story of mothers around the world. We need your help — please make your tax-deductible contribution today! Visit the Museum of Motherhood NOW OPEN in NYC – Tues.-Sun., 10:45-6:30.

 

Photo credit: shaka | MorgueFile

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