Thursday, February 25, 2016
Go on my children, eat those stale french fries!
When I came across this on Facebook a couple weeks back it brought up all of the old feelings of trying to do things "right" with my kids when they were younger. I realize now that it really hasn't mattered all that much on THEM how I did things when they younger but more so how my choices on them have affected ME. Let me take you on a little journey through the past.
Most of you know that I had Levi as a teenager. I had all of the best intentions but to be honest, I now think of myself as a selfish idiot when it came to being pregnant and having an infant.
[For the record, I DO NOT care what other people do during their pregnancies, labor, delivery and with their children.. this is all about ME and how I feel about MY choices.]
I trusted everything my Dr's and nurses told me and suggested for me during my pregnancy, labor and delivery with Levi. I didn't once think about all of my options or do much research on ANYTHING. In the end, I had a labor and a delivery that, to be completely honest, pisses me off whenever I think too much about it. Now, don't get me wrong, the day Levi was born is [tied for 1st for] the most amazing day of my life! There's no way to describe the instant love you have when meeting your child! Though everything about the labor and delivery was just wrong, wrong, wrong.. not letting me progress long enough before recommending Pitocin (nurses suggested it, so why not!?), then getting an epidural because Pitocin makes your contractions so insanely intense, followed by more Pitocin because epidurals stall labor, followed by suggesting a vacuum to assist Levi in coming out because he was "sunny side up" instead of oh, I don't know.. having me change positions? But wait.. I couldn't do that because I got an epidural making me immobile and in no control what-so-ever. Long story short.. I regret getting that Pitocin. And let's not forget me allowing them to do an episiotomy.. my oh my.
The biggest mom guilt I have of all is choosing to stop breastfeeding Levi at 3 months old because I just wanted to be a smoker again. Seriously, Emma?! What a freaking selfish idiot. The thought of this really actually makes me cry.
So, I KNEW that the next time I had a child I would "DO IT RIGHT". I quit smoking the day I found out I was pregnant with Rex and never looked back. I researched everything I possibly could, watched documentaries around pregnancy and birth, read a countless number of books and became as educated as possible. I found an amazing birth center with a group of midwives, hired a doula and was determined to have an unmedicated, natural water birth with Rex. Long story short, everything went as planned and I could not be happier about my birth experience with him. Rex was exclusively breastfed for 6 months only taking a bottle a few times a week while I was at work. When he started on solids after 6 months old I made his baby food with only organic food. I even went as [freakishly] far as to boil. tap. water. and cool it before letting him drink it. HA! I seriously had gone a little too far with this "making-up-for-the-past-and-doing-it-right-this-time" stuff by boiling tap water (I was seriously off my rocker).. I let Rex self-wean from breastfeeding and he was done with it at 17 months old. Was I ready for him to be done!? Hell no I wasn't! I felt like it was after the breastfeeding ended that I started to get symptoms of postpartum depression. Then slowly but surely the hormonal fog of pregnancy and breastfeeding lifted and so did my grip on "doing things right".
Now, my kids hardly eat any organic food (that s*** is expensive!) and I can barely keep their [unhealthy] snacking under control.
Parenting has been a constant journey of learning, growth, guilt, pressure and doubt. I've learned that I'm happiest when I don't put so much pressure on myself for "doing things right" and just let my kids be kids without putting so many limits on things.
In the end of it all, I have two amazing and healthy children that have turned out just fine no matter how they were brought into this world and the choices I've made for them. So go on my children, eat those stale french fries! I really do appreciate the few minutes you've saved me from cleaning them up myself.