Thursday, March 3, 2011

Anti-survival mode...

For me, in the beginning it was survival mode. 100%. We had a 4 month old and less than 24 hours to prepare for her arrival. Our friends and family were amazing and stepped up in a major way...seriously some people dream about having friends and family like ours! Our old routine was dead and gone, our time was now her time, and that was ok by us. We had been waiting one year for this and we put on our big girl/boy underpants and started full speed ahead! As it turns out she was a very relaxed girl, go with the flow and really only needed the basics from us which was AMAZING! Our relationship with each other changed and evolved into a parenting partnership where strengths were praised and weaknesses were tweaked but we were in it to win it! It's only now, five months later, that I'm trying to switch gears into anti-survival mode. I found myself just "trying to get through the day" and while that may be appropriate on certain days I don't think it's fair to Emery every day. I have to teach myself (and Tyler does too) that sometimes the schedule doesn't exist and it's not going to ruin everything we've done by tossing it out the window one day by just having fun and getting to enjoy HER. She deserves it. She deserves my undivided attention every now and then, she deserves to know that there is some flexibility involved in what we do every day and while she won't ever in her life remember what her first year with us was like...I will. When her first year is over I want to remember that we had fun, for ME to remember, not her. These last couple weeks with her have been a little difficult. We've tried to change her schedule a little bit and she just isn't responding well to it, and she's also giving us an extremely hard time with eating her food. She shakes her head back and forth, or cries the whole time and this just doesn't make for a positive dining experience. We've tried switching her food, heating it, not heating it, letting her try and feed herself and sometimes it works but when we try the same thing twice it's right back to the screaming. After a relatively long day on Tuesday, Tyler was unfortunately the recipient of every fit she had right down to putting her jammies on and when I came into her room he just looked defeated. He was feeling disconnected so I just said..."Listen, don't worry about doing her hair or anything just grab a book, sit in the chair and spend some time with her. Let her do what she wants when she wants. She has spent the entire day doing what everyone else wants/needs her to do and now is just the time for you to be fun daddy, not routine daddy". He read to her, rocked her to sleep and was feeling a little more connected by the end of the night. That scenario is exactly how this blog post formed and I started thinking about the last few weeks with her and I was straight up in survival mode. Routine is good. Routine is what children need. Routine is what adults need but every routine needs a good break once in a while so that's what we did. We broke it, we stayed in our jammies, took an early nap, didn't force the food issue and just dealt with the day as it happened and it felt good. I don't want five years from now to only remember me "surviving" the first year of her life...I want to remember thriving.

1 comment:

  1. I'm so guilty of just surviving. Just yesterday, Will had a grumpy day and I was thinking about the "normal" days that I just take for granted and get through instead of really cherishing. I've been so challenged lately to live fully in the moments were given and not just push through to the next big thing. Thanks for sharing!

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