We have all brought in the new year and welcomed 2015 to our lives, with a lot of happiness for all of you. Now that’s it has arrived I can stop talking about Christmas and the new year. (Well I can now)

Last year there where a lot of new additions to our families with a cousin, two  nieces and a nephew between mine and Daddies families.  With babies as most of you know comes advice (sometimes unwanted and mostly conflicting), constant talk about babies and not leaving the house In under an hour for the next few years. As we all sat week by week having the same conversations each time a baby is born I started to think back, I seem to have blocked this part out of my memory somehow.
So I decided that I wanted to share with a post every week for the next couple of weeks about things I was or wasn’t told about having D in our lives, things that help to control a toddler and another few idea’s I have in my head.

To start us off I wanted to tell you five things I didn’t know before D.

Now people did tell me little bits about these, but I didn’t get the whole answer from them. So I have decided to share them with everyone and see if it is only me who was kept in the dark on these aspects of becominh a parent.

1. There are so many parenting techniques!  – when I was pregnant I had no idea that there where so many ways to bring up your child.  Now I did know that every family has their own unique way to influence a child in their upbringing, that’s why we are all individuals and no two families will do it in exsactly the same way. However I was not aware that everything we do in parenting is connected to one of the many parenting techniques that are out there. I began to wonder what happened to the days when your mum and mother figures in your family had the biggest influence on how you influenced your children through their upbringing. I soon realised after some thinking that it was the Internet that changed this looking to your family.  With everything now available at a click of a button it has changed where and how we look for guidance on parenting.  I like to think that we are bringing up D in our way and that we choose what suits us in our lives but in reality our techniques and ways of doing things with our lives is very much influenced by technology. Our world is now so tech savvy that we have a wealth of knowledge at our fingertips but along with all the knowledge there is advertising and TV shows on parenting (that mostly make me feel bad for the parents involved). Subconsciously we are taking in these ways of parenting and sometimes using them. For an example,  I watched a lot of Super Nanny before D and I do agree with some of the techniques she uses especially the naughty step. Yes D is almost 22 months and has a naughty step, he has done for around 9 months now. All of my family commented on how D was and is too young to understand the naughty step. So I put it to the test. For 2 weeks a few months ago I didn’t use the naughty step when D was bold or done something he shouldn’t be. After 3 days D started to act up and done anything he wanted when he wanted. He started throwing toys at us and just overall being very bold. Everyone noticed the changes in his behaviour.  After the 2 weeks D spent 1 day where he went on the naughty step roughly 10 – 15 times sat for his minute and told us he was sorry. We have not had problems like this since.  So yes D does understand and has probably understood from not long after we started using the technique,  so why should we change this because it’s controversial at D’s age? Are you now having little things pop into your mind that you have done through influence of the media? Did they work for you or not?

2. You will probably never get your pre-baby body back – I think that we are lulled into a false sense of security about this by celebraties managing to look perfect after 5 weeks of having a baby. Yes you can fit into your clothes again but your body shape will change in some ways. Having a baby is a huge thing to happen to our bodies. You grew a human being inside you in 9 months! That is natures biggest achievement and we cannot expect our bodies to just go back to how they where before. We just have to learn to love them. I have to admit I do remember being very upset about my body at the start but I do think this has more to do with my hormones as I am and have been happy since I caught myself crying because nothing would work when I tried to lose weight.  I am now proud of the fact that my body made D (with a little help from Daddy of course). But what I am trying to say is if someone had told me this when I was pregnant I would have been prepared and probably not have ended up crying because nothing would work.

3. A calm environment is a calm baby – now this may have you think well yes obviously.  I did know to some extent that a calm environment is good for babies, however I was not prepared for what our health visitor told us in the last week of her visits. D was always a very happy and content baby who very rarely cried (Yes I was incredibly lucky). Myself and Daddy are very relaxed (apparently), we never raise our voices for no reason and never argue in front of D (with the exception of who’s on dishes tonight). Now when our health visitor came out she informed us that she had only heard D cry when he got heel prick test and a few times when he was weighed. (He usually slept through that part) She continued to ask us a few questions and once satisfied by our answers informed us that because we are so relaxed and didn’t rush about to get to D when he did cry (it was more of whine than a cry most of the time) it had allowed D to pick up on the calm environment around him and to act in the same way ( also explaining his not so crying cry ). I hadn’t realised how we act and do things for babies has such an influence on how they grow to act and how they react as babies. So that may be food for thought or the heath vistor could just be mad and we where very lucky with D being such a good baby.

4. From a very young age they have their own personalities – I had never noticed thst babies are so individual even from as young as 3 months! Everything from the faces they make to way they make noises is the beginning of their personality, who knew? One of the best parts of being a parent for me has been watching as D’s personality bloomed in front of me. Everything they do themselves is expressing to you how they feel and possibly even what they want.
5. Knowing your child is ill – This one could just be me but I can always tell when D is starting to get ill. From how he smells to how he acts. The first sign for us is that he wants to be hugged and cuddled for long periods of time (for a toddler). D always starts to get incresingly irritable and tired before he actually gets ill, the final sign for us is that slowly we will start to smell baby sick (if your not yet a parent it has a destinctive smell of it’s own) the closer to D getting ill the stronger the smell and it stays for the duration of the illness he has, then suddenly disappears.

I’m sure most of the parents out there are nodding their heads as they read down our list. I do hope that this helps seone looking for a bit more of an answer to the half answered question they can’t get out of their mind.

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