Did my mother make as many mistakes as I did and do? Do my friends? Do people just not want to talk about the stupid and embarrassing things they have done? I guess we’re all afraid of looking dumb or irresponsible but we all make mistakes sometimes, don’t we?
Over the past year and a bit, I have come to realize that parenting, like so many other things, is a trial and error process that you won’t necessarily get right the first time. I’m starting to wonder now about the “eldest children” out there that I know, aka. the parenting guinea pigs. Forget 'middle-child syndrome'!
But seriously, I think I am doing a pretty good job raising my Little Man but like I said, it’s harder than it looks. And though I’d like to blame lack of sleep and changing hormones and all those fabulous excuses, my child sleeps through the night and is nearly 1 ½ so I’ve got nothing. Guess I’ll just have to admit that sometimes, I’m just not that perfect - sometimes.
Here are just some of the things that make me question my ability to ‘parent’:
I have literally spoken the phrase: “No, this is Mummy’s chocolate and I don’t have to share.” I have also tried to sneak chocolate past the Little Man . You don’t even have to say it – I know.
Similarly, I have seriously considered raising my child to believe that he is allergic to chocolate. I’d love to say this would be for his benefit but really…
When I have run out of things to entertain my son (if we’re stuck waiting somewhere) I have let him play with such non-Daddy-approved “toys” from my purse as lip gloss, tampons and make up.
Instead of nursery rhymes, since my son was a newborn I have been singing songs like “All the Single Babies” (Beyonce), “Shake, Shake, Shake – Don’t Shake the Baby” (Shake Your Booty) and “Push it” (Salt n’ Peppa – usually when he’s pooping).
I laugh when my son farts. I know this only encourages him but he looks so surprised and then cheeky… how do you not laugh?
Whenever the Little Man sees an empty beer can he runs to pick it up. He will either pretend to drink from it and then go “ahhhh” or he will take it straight to his Daddy. We have no idea where he picked up these habits.
I may have once forgotten to properly close the backdoor to my car after buckling my son in. I was pulling out of my spot in the Walmart parking lot and the door flew open – the Little Man laughed and started waving at the shocked people he could now clearly see. I stopped and closed the door. It may have actually happened twice.
Whenever the Little Man hears a loud truck, he points and yells, “Daddy!” When we’re in a parking lot, I find myself repeating over and over, “No, that’s not your Daddy. No, he’s not your Daddy either. Nope, not baby’s Daddy, try again.” I love it when the guys driving the big trucks have their windows down though and hear him. That “deer-in-headlights” look is priceless. It’s even funnier if there’s a girl sitting next to them. The Little Man will usually smile and wave like he really does recognize them too.
It’s bad enough that the Little Man already recognizes a Tim Horton’s (the source of the occasional cookie ) and claps his hands and points from the backseat of a car going 90 km/hr, but it’s even worse that the girls in the Tim Horton’s drive thru by my house know not just me but also my son by name!
I bought the Little Man his own little baseball bat. I don’t know what I was thinking with that one. Our cat still hasn’t forgiven me.
And finally, I’m wondering whether I really should be saying things to my son like:
- “No, we don’t hit Daddy. Only Mummy can do that.”
- “Get the cat!”
(He runs after it screaming. It’s pretty funny until he does it to other people’s cats.)
- Daddy – “What does Mummy say?”, Little Man – “Mooo!”
(My husband thought that was a pretty clever thing to teach him.)
- “Ouch! Mother Ducker!”
(If he repeats that one at daycare, I think I’m still going to look pretty bad.)
- “Look – there goes Big Fat Baby!”
(Baby who lives down the street whose name I always forget. This has the potential to be quite embarrassing once the Little Man can talk more.)
- “Pick it up quickly, it’s still good. Five second rule… Ten second rule… Thirty second rule… Here, let me get that for you.”
- “Baby, be careful! Don’t go near the Evil Bunny!”
(My sister-in-law bought me this as a joke. I suppose I shouldn’t perpetuate the idea that the bunny is “evil”. I’ll include a picture so then you’ll have a better idea of what I’m talking about. Actually, in this case, it might be an example of good parenting – you decide!)