Remember when you knew everything there was to know about parenting? You know that ignorant time you now refer to as your pre-parenting days? Sometimes I like to think about the time when I was an expert and laugh at myself.
I'm a few years into this parenting gig and I've learned a few lessons along the way. Some involve parenting truths for everyone, others apply only to twins, more just to special needs parenting. But there are some parenting lessons that are just a little weird and they continue to throw me for a loop. So while I know the truth about say lesson #2, I'm still going to make mistake after mistake since I can't seem to change my thinking before it fails me.
That's OK. Well not really, I wish I had it all figured out so I could write a best selling parenting book and make millions! Perhaps I could write a book titled Things I Know But Don't Do. I could stretch that into at least 20 pages. A quick read like that would fly off the shelves don't you think?
In no particular order, here are some of the parenting truths that I've learned over the years.
Toys are not created equal! You may think expensive toys will always be a huge hit, but they won't. I don't even want to know how many times we have spent a huge chunk of change on a toy only to have them play with it for a second and then never touch it again. But the tiny stuffed animal that you picked up in the Target bargain bin, yeah that will be played with for years.
What works for child one may not work with child #2 and #3. Good luck with that.
Samples at the grocery store are awesome. You get to see if your kids will eat the food before you buy it. At least that is the theory. In reality, kids will eat anything at Costco but once you plop down $15 for it and bring it home it becomes yucky.
A small percentage of kids throw up for hours 5 days prior to getting strep throat. I have one of those kids, it sucks.
Kids never get sick during the day. If someone is going to throw up it will start in the middle of the night.
Some kids are born picky eaters. I made my own baby food and introduced foods EXACTLY the same with my 3 kids. Isabella is beyond picky and my Molly will eat anything, and Mark falls in between the two. It baffles me that the same process produced three completely different results.
My picky eater's thoughts on dinner
The second and I mean the second you say "my kids never ___________" they will do it. Even if they are not there to hear it, they will somehow sense the mistake and pounce on the opportunity to prove you wrong. The same principle applies to my kids always __________.
Your worst personality traits will appear in at least one of your kids. It's ugly and real. It's also a great reason to change those personality traits. It's much easier said than done though. Again, good luck with that!
Just when you think you're reaching your breaking point, your child will grab your heart by doing something so sweet and lovable. It will surprise you and it's wonderful.
It's bittersweet when parenting stages end and there are so many stages to outgrow. This fall my son is going to school full time and I'm struggling with losing him a year early. But I know it's what is best for him and I'm excited that he got into the program. However when my twins turned one and we left bottles behind forever, it was only sweet so not all stages are bad to leave behind.
Look at my babies!
What weird parenting lessons have you learned?