Saturday, November 11, 2006

moms love to give advice

I was all set to write about how I made whole wheat bread today, but then I came across Mary's challenge to suggest advice for someone preparing for motherhood. So I changed my mind and put some thought into this list instead. What a relief! Now I don’t have to bother making bread.

10 pieces of advice I wish I had been given before I had children.

1. Sometimes in the middle of the night, when you are cleaning throw-up off the carpet from a sick child who almost, but not quite, made it to the bathroom, don’t be surprised if you think: “80% of motherhood is about bodily fluids -- vomit, spitup, drool, messy diapers, pee around the toilet, runny noses, blood, and tears.” In the light of day you may be willing to lower the percentage in your estimate. But not by much.

2. All those crazy pregnancy symptoms are in fact preparing you to empathize more with your baby when it arrives. At least this was the case with mine:

the urge to eat all the time
the feeling that I was exhausted but couldn’t fall asleep
the gas and indigestion (when I wished that someone could throw me over their shoulder and give me a good burping)
those times I got a cursed case of the hiccups that. would. not. go. away.
the tendency to cry for no good reason
the need to be held more

3. Read to your child every day – even if it is just one short book. When I’m reading to my kids, I can feel for a brief moment that despite all my failings, right now – as I turn these pages – I am doing something right.

4. Never brag about your children to your neighbors.

5. Never complain about your children to your neighbors either.

6. For that matter, never complain about your neighbors in front of your children.
(I learned all three of these the hard way)

7. Clean clothes are overrated.

8. You know those people in books who say nursing is easy and, if you’re doing it correctly, will never be painful? They are lying. This is coming from a veteran breastfeeder here. With every child, those first few weeks were real toe-curlers. I would still say nursing is worth every minute, but I just wish I had known what to expect.

9. The fancier the toy, the less likelihood it will be played with. The best investment we ever made was a sandbox.

10. Read every parenting book you can get your hands on. Then don’t be afraid to follow your instincts about what is right for each child. I believe every mother is uniquely suited to meet the needs of her own children. When I tuck my kids in at night, I tell them “If I could choose from all the children in all the world, I’d pick you.” Hopefully they feel the same way about their mom


Kimberly said...

I love, love, love #2. Why do something boring like bake bread when you can dazzle us all with your brilliance instead.

Although to be fair, I think making bread does require brilliance.

owlhaven said...

I esp liked 3 and 10.

Thanks for your post!

Mary, mom to many

Heth said...

Great list, and so true.

Jenn said...

I am not a mom -yet. So I plan on tucking these wise remarks away for the future. But as a teacher I can whole heartedly agree with 3, 7, & 9. Have a wonderful weekend!

Anonymous said...

Great words of wisdom.
Just passing through, nice site.

Too Blessed to be Stressed said...

Thanks for visiting PJ Academy =)
Great advice over here - clean clothes are overated - and #9 was the best investment for us too.


edj said...

#2 cracked me up! What an insight! :) Great list. #9 is so true.