I’ve always heard that your first child will be the “test child”. This is the one you will screw up with. You will either be so over the top that you will drive yourself crazy avoiding all germs, chemicals, processed food, etc… Or you will be completely clueless and be the parent that rushes to the emergency room for the third time that month because your child broke their arm or swallowed a grape whole, or shoved a Lego up their nose. This child is the one that teaches you about being a parent. This child is the one that teaches you about your limits. This is the way parenting was done for decades. And sometimes you screw up with the second child just as much even though I’ve been told by the time you have more children you are supposed to know what to do. You are supposed to know everything. That’s complete crap. 

    I’ve also heard, more recently, there is a specific way to parent. Now depending on who is talking this specified parenting outline seems to change very often. You just need to have access to google and you should never make a mistake. However, thanks to social media, not only do you have the pressure you put on yourself to follow this outline and be the perfect parent, you are sure to be called a “shit parent” if you fail to do so. This is also crap. 

    If you frequent social media and belong to any parenting and/or pregnancy groups you should already know the rundown. If you want to be the perfect parent you must baby wear until your back breaks, breastfeed until your child is in college, and rear face in a carseat until their feet break through the back windshield. Okay, yes these are exaggerations, but the very thought that all children need the same rules is absolutely ridiculous. When it comes to safety these things are absolutely important but otherwise not so much. And when it is not your child in question, and does not affect your child in any way, why do you care so much? When it comes to public safety, such as vaccinations, these are things that do warrant a reaction from others. 

    So it may seem like I’ve been ranting and have been all over the place. The point is we hear so many things on the internet and I want you to think of everything you have heard and then think of where you stand on any and all parenting issues you have read about. If you are on the fence about anything, that’s fine, you likely have some time to figure it out. Now I will tell you where I stand so we can get this out of the way. Some of you may develop preconceived notions about me because of where I stand and will probably read no further. That’s fine because any more of my stories will probably make your head spin. This is probably not for you. 

    I had my first child at 16 (a now 8 year old named Krystia), second at 23 (a now 1 1/2 year old named Logan) and third at 25 (a now 2 month old named Tobias). I formula fed/feed all of them by choice and have never breastfed. I baby wore Krystia one time every and other than that used a stroller. I baby wore Logan most times when traveling and sometimes used a stroller. I wore Tobias a couple of times but usually use a double stroller for both him and Logan. I don’t remember when I forward faced my daughter, but I do know at about four years old she was just using a seat belt. Logan is still rear facing in a convertible car seat and Tobias is rear facing in his brother’s old car seat. My children are completely vaccinated for their ages and will continue to be. I have never waited until six months to start foods. I don’t tend to look at labels and check if things are organic, or non-GMO. I buy what we like and what is on sale. We watch TV and movies and don’t really censor what the kids watch. I’ve been a working mom, a student, and a SAHM (stay at home mom). My daughter has been to public school and will start being homeschooled this year. I’ve used disposables and cloth diapers. I can go on and on but the list really never ends. It goes from ear piercings to hair cuts to more and we would never finish.

    There is a preview. If you are finding me to be a shit parent already, you should probably just stop here and never return. You won’t like what the future here holds. If you wish to stay, great, I’d love to have you. This will not be me giving you a guideline for parenting. As a matter of fact I advise you not to take my life as a parent as something to aspire to. I advise you to make your own decisions and do what works for your family. Most days I don’t even change out of my pajamas until I shower that night and change into new pajamas. However, I do always manage to do the one we as parents strive to do each and every and I’ve managed to do it again. I kept the kids alive today.

Published by The Mom Face