September 29, 2015


Once upon a time, I had a very specific parenting style. Mostly before I became a mom, but even when I had two little ones just 15 months apart, I had ideals and high hopes. I made baby food and read them books every day. I had a schedule for cleaning and cooked meals. We attended play groups and story time. I bathed them daily.

Somewhere along the way, exhaustion, bickering and constantly being needed beat the standards right out of me. Now my parenting style is more of I Don't Wanna. For example, I think rara would love to take a dance class with her little friend, but when I think about signing her up, paying for it and then having to be somewhere at a certain time every week... well I just don't wanna.

For me it all comes down to time. For the past 8 years almost all my time has been given to my children. Newborns are needy. Newborn plus toddler - forget about it. Then there was Birth to 3 and endless doctor's appointments. Then kids in different schools at different times. Then another newborn and a long drive to school. There were nap times and snack times and early bedtime. So many demands on my time.

Now I drop off the big kids at school and have 7 hours to fill. I find that I'm feeling selfish with my time. I am more than happy to drop the laundry and meet a friend at the library, but I don't want many commitments. I want to choose if we just take the dog for a walk and hang around the house or maybe we have a bit of an adventure.

Of course that guilt as you scroll through Facebook and see all the kids and their sports, theater or art classes. Am I holding my kids back? I was involved in gymnastics and soccer. Are my kids missing out on something? But I don't want to spend my weekends driving here and there and watching a sporting event for one while trying to entertain the other two. I just don't wanna.

The weekends are the time we spend together as a family. To me that is more important than anything else. There will come a day when my kids are going off with friends and no longer want to spend all weekend just hanging out together. Plus they are getting a happy relaxed mom. So until the eye rolling starts when I suggest we all go pick apples together, I'm sticking with this parenting style.

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