Parenting following instinct

One of the things I love about parenting our second child is how naturally I can follow instincts. With our first I lacked confidence and questioned everything, predominately I was swayed by opinions and values that had shaped my view of parenting. At times I felt like I was swimming against the current, fighting the natural wants of my baby because some preconceived idea didn’t think it was right. It was like I had to enforce every little thing that happened, I had to be in control, because surely a little baby couldn’t be the master of their own life.

What I have learnt on my parenting journey is that babies and young children are very very clever. Not in the academic intellectual way or the cunning charismatic way that may be deemed superior in our adult world. No…our children are masters of instinct, they are geared for survival, and all they do is expressed from their truthful pure self.

IMG_4076_fotorSo second time around I don’t look at the clock as much, I don’t count feeds or stress over naps, there is no schedule which is not Miss Ruby Jean’s schedule. If you ask me how often she feeds I seriously can not say, some days it may be a couple of times in every hour, other days it is one time every couple of hours. My baby wants someone to hold her MOST of the time and you know what?…that is completely natural. Yes I take my baby to bed with me, we sleep side by side like two peas in a pod, she loves having me near and I love not having to get out of bed to breastfeed. I also understand that she is ever changing and evolving as all little people do, I understand that what works for her today may not work tomorrow, I understand that the only thing that will work is honouring her instincts and adapting with that journey.

Now I realise that she can be the master of her life and in fact she is also my master for this time, that probably sounds scary as hell to some and maybe just a bit ridiculous to others, but guess what? WHAT!? I am less stressed, I have more energy and…following Ruby’s instincts is a WHOLE lot more rewarding then forcing my preconceived ideas.

Dad be stepping up

I freakin LOVE my husband. Sure he annoys me to no end, leaves his clothes all over the house and has a distinct knack for relaxing on the couch while chaos reins around him…totally none the wiser. BUT…I love love LOVE him, and every single day I feel beyond blessed to have him on my team.

Although we’ve had our up’s and down’s the years roll on and with each one our connection is stronger. When parenthood landed on our door, with all the surprise of snow for an Aussie Christmas, I knew our relationship was hitting a big test. After all it has been my experience as a witness that children tend to make or break a relationship.

To my utter delight (and quiet confidence) parenthood proved to only deepen our understanding and compassion for each other. My man stepped up to the plate as a little human catapulted us into a life with a level of purpose and dedication that we had not experienced before. Suddenly what was important actually seemed a hell of a lot more important then… hmmm anything previously. And LOVE!!… my gosh, we learned to love more then ever before and this love was unconditional.

IMG_3490_fotorNow here we are welcoming another member to our family and getting pretty darn use to Little Roo being our number two. And my husband…well he be stepping up yet again. Sure I already knew he was a great dad. But with one child it is easier for mum (or whomever happens to be primary carer) to juggle the bulk of what needs to be done. I know this isn’t every family’s dynamic but it certainly seems a trend among my tribe. When you add another, not soooo easy. The team has had to reinvent itself, change the strategies and pull together. It’s not always beer and skittles, but certainly results in an ever deepening family connection.

So to my main man Mr G, thanks…for stepping up and being the insanely amazing man you are… I am truly grateful 🙂

p.s remember this when I am tired and grumpy and send you evil mumma eyes xo

The Magic of Development Delays

For quite a while I have wanted to write a post about how development delays create an emotional struggle within parents, more specifically within myself. For any parent there are days that are a complete struggle. Now add to that seeing four different therapists in the last two weeks, tracking while not judging every move your child makes, knowing that no matter what well meaning friends say your child is behind…they do things differently…there are challenges only they will face, struggling because your toddler hasn’t said any new words for 8 months yet they understand a billion new concepts, being a total helicopter parent even though you would really rather not…fact is your child just needs more help, and seeing that confused look from inquiring parents at the park “how old is he? oh… same as mine.” To be honest some days feel like poop, some days you wonder if they will ever move forward, some days you cry.

IMG_2997_fotorThen some days… the magic happens.

The last month has held some wonderful development leaps for our little guy. It is the most freakin AMAZING feeling to see him discover another layer of being. I can not really explain how elated you feel when missing pieces of the puzzle begin to fall into place for your child. Yes all parents get this joy when their child reaches a milestone, but for parents of children with delays it is different.

It is different because for months, or even years, you have been watching for certain behaviour. You have been watching because you are highly aware and knowledgable due to the countless therapy sessions you have attended and articles you have scoured. Then BOOM there it is!!! and like a waterfall affect 50 more things fall into place, because that is how we learn. One foot in front of the other, one process leads to the next, the metamorphosis has a cycle.

Oh holy cow it just makes you so damn happy! Picture me skipping around the beach, ridiculously heavily pregnant, following my little man who has all of a sudden become focused on digging, tipping, pouring, sorting, posting!!OH MY!! We fill bottles in the ocean then run back to collect shells, he sits engrossed in play for an hour. A FREAKIN HOUR! A whole hour of focus where I haven’t needed to console him, save him from drowning or entertain him. No, we have just explored and played and felt joy.

IMG_3173_fotorThen this week NEW WORDS!!!! What the? did you just say? Oh gosh you did and look you said it again and that is a sound you have never made and there is two more words that sound similar and you are using them correctly and LOOK AT YOUR SMILE!

I know all parents have felt the joy, but I am sorry… it is not the same. So to all those out there who have struggled through the emotions of development delays, HOORAY TO YOU. Hooray to those moments when your heart swells and it swells for your children who LIGHT UP with the new discovery that has come to them with more time and effort then others realise exists.

These are the days when magic happens.