One of Mama Kat’s writing prompts for this week’s Writer’s Workshop this week was:
4.) List 6 things you do as a parent that you swore you would never do.
Truthfully, I don’t remember making a lot of hard and fast claims about what kind of parent I would be, but here are six things about my parenting methods / about being a parent that surprise me:
- I cannot tell you the number of times I have uttered those tired, cliched parenting come backs like “Because I said so!” or “By the time I count to 5…” or “Don’t make me turn this car around!” They may be cliched but they mostly work and sometimes you are too frazzled and tired to be clever.
- I have literally watched my babies while they are sleeping just to make sure they are still breathing – something I used to think was like a joke people made about weirdly nervous mothers – and by babies I mean I still do this sometimes and they are four and seven.
- I have always been a very paranoid mother. If there is a safety device, we’ve used it. A precaution to be taken? We took it. If there’s a weird fear you have, I probably have it, too. I’m surprised I’ve never bubble wrapped my children sometimes. I don’t remember being a big fat scaredy cat before children so I’m assuming it’s their fault.
- I have developed a strange language for speaking to my children so that they will listen and understand what I want. For instance if I loudly declare: “Circle touching!!” in a sort of maniacally sing-song voice as my kids are getting out of the car, they know that they are to step out of the doorway and put one hand on the gas cap cover of the car which is both out of the way of fingers getting smashed in car doors and a physical acknowledgement that they are to remain touching the car until I tell them otherwise. I’ll take that award for Mother of the Year now.
- I don’t think I ever realized I wanted to be a stay at home mother before I had a child of my own. I’ve always assumed I’d have some obnoxiously time consuming job, I just never would have guessed that it would involve changing diapers, making peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and reading story books to a small girl child wearing a tiara and plastic glass slippers and a boy child pretending to travel through time and space. I feel blessed to be able to stay home with my kids, but it also surprises me that I volunteered for the job.
- When I was a kid, the grown ups around me all seemed to be so old and to have it all together and know exactly what they are doing. Now that I am roughly the same age as a lot of those “grown ups” were back then, I am surprised at how not together I feel and how often I still feel like I’m winging it. And I get the feeling that this may never change. I still remain surprised that I am considered an adult by and large and that supposedly I have all the answers now.
What things surprise you about being a parent / grown up?