Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Babies Just Do Stuff

So I have this friend who's daughter is about 6 weeks younger than MK. (A year ago, this seemed like a huge difference. Now, less so. In 20 years, we won't even think about it.)

She did everything different from the way we did it. She formula fed, she did CIO, she worked from the time her daughter was 6 weeks old. (I get how totally lucky I am to have been able to take a 10 month maternity leave, I really do.) Every Attachment-Parenting, hippy granola thing I did, she didn't. Every conventional thing that she did, I didn't.

Her daughter is having some sleep issues after a string of illnesses and teeth. (I hate teeth. Seriously.) And now she and her husband are trying to get their 'perfect sleeper' back. Since all of my methods are strung together from making crap work because I don't have CIO in me or in my soul, I know I can't really tell her anything she will find useful. Except this:

Babies do stuff. Toddlers even more so. They go through phases, are royal pains in the butt as often as not, and then they're just not anymore. They've moved on to some other way to make their parents crazy. I'm pretty sure that this continues until they're teenagers.

The Bug moved on from being weird about sleep to being defiant... I ask her not to do something, she looks at me, grins, and does it again, as though what I actually said was 'one more time, but with feeling!' Once I figure this one out, she'll try to get her nose pierced or something.

I really think that my only rule of parenting is this: 'kids do stuff. Once you've accommodated your life to that stuff, they start doing other stuff.' My primary task as a parent, I suppose, is to not get to attached to the stuff that worked in that mythical time 'before.'

Damnit. If I'm going to put this parenting plan in action, I'm going to need to spend some more time on that dusty meditation cushion.