Thursday, July 24, 2014

K is for Keeping it Real

There are a lot of comparisons to be made when you have children, especially when you start to compare the specifics. I sometimes think that mamas are our own worst enemies with this. We like to talk about our children, and inevitably the talk often turns to whose baby is doing what and when (read more about why I threw development milestones out the window here). Sure, some babies sleep like little angels right from the beginning. Some get into a great routine first thing. Some slot right into your life easily. Some toilet train like a dream. And then, some don't. No two babies are going to be exactly the same, just the way that no two adults are going to be the same.

Sure, Ellie is generally a great child, but she's definitely not great all the time. I had some friends around for afternoon tea a few weeks ago, and they were there when Ellie woke from her midday nap. She was in a clingy, screaming, totally age appropriate mood… and they had never seen her like that. They commented that she was usually so good and all I can say is that, yes, it takes a lot of effort to help her appear that way. If I know we are going somewhere, I can prepare as much as possible. I can try to align sleep times, make sure she is fed, changed and has plenty of snacks and entertainment packed for distractions. The public, prepared Ellie is very different from the everyday at home Ellie. And that's ok, but it was just a shock to people who hadn't seen her that way.
 

And that is exactly what I'm talking about. I think that as parents, we need to keep it real and support each other. Absolutely, brag if your child does something marvellous, but share the daily grind stuff too. If one was to only focus on what gets posted on social media, it could make us feel a little inadequate and like we aren't doing a good job (or is that just me?!). I don't always have time to do daily craft activities, whip up gourmet treats, create intellectual stimulation, clean the house and socialise constantly while having everyone look impeccably groomed. Yes, I do go out in public with dirty hair and no makeup, wearing (shock!) a tracksuit.

The types of blogs and pages I follow are the ones that share the parenting journey warts and all. There are several reasons for this:
 
  • It makes me feel like what I'm doing is ok
  • If I'm having a bad day, it helps to feel that I'm not alone
  • I don't like to read about how everything is perfect all the time, because how will I know how to handle it when things go wrong otherwise?
The types of stories I share on my blog hopefully reflect that my life isn't perfect – and I don't want it to be! Let's normalise what having a family is like and keep it real!

Do you have a favourite blogger who manages to make you laugh and feel like you're handling things ok? I'd love to hear about them!

6 comments:

  1. I don't have children but am at the age when many (most!) of my friends do - and it is the ones that 'keep it real' that I most admire. I have no doubt that parenting is one of the hardest tasks out there, and my friends who have acknowledged that and can accept their child will sometimes tantrum in public and/or they won't always be dressed like they were pre-children are inspiring to me - more so than those who tuck themselves away at those trouble times and pretend they don't happen.

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    1. Thanks Kari. There is something to be said for showing things how they really are. I know that things won't always be perfect but I learn best from seeing how other people have dealt with things and moved forward. I always think well, if they can do it, so can I!

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  2. It takes so much effort to get Darius into public prepared mode... might be easier to get the public into Darius prepared mode.

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    1. That's part of the whole real parenting gig I suspect. Letting your children loose in their actual state! I think your man is lovely no matter his mode though x

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  3. Couldn't agree more about keeping it real

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    1. Thanks! I love your blog (had a bit of a stalk, lovely to 'meet' new people). You definitely show real life as well :)

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