How Time Changes Parenting Perceptions
I was thinking about this last night while I was laying in bed. It is funny how time and experience seriously changes your perceptions on certain things in parenting. Whether it is a parenting choice, or style. Or an experience you have gone through.
I go back to when I had my oldest son. I had so many ideas in my head of how everything was going to go. Birth, parenting, choices I would make when it came to him, including circumcision. Everything. I was a 22 year old first time mom who knew it all. You know you have been there… I think we all were at some point in time.
Before I left the hospital I had gone back on two things I said I would never do and it set the tone for parenting in general. Trial and error. Because lets face it… there is no manual for kids.
My first birth experience turned into a nightmare of sorts. I had dreamed of a beautiful medication free natural birth, and I was so dead set on it in my head I refused to look at the giant red flags my OB/GYN was throwing at me along my pregnancy. I ended up with an induction, epidural, and a c-section. It was a lesson. But I didn’t know the moral of the lesson until years later. Now really…
In the months and even years after he was born I insisted through the influence of others that my provider was just too impatient to let me labor and while that may be true, because I know she was constantly looking at her watch, I know she was spitting time limits out, I know it was not right. But I also know that two more children later I could never have given birth to him. Whether I was only given the seven hours I had, or twenty seven hours like I had with my middle son.
I wasn’t until February of this year I was talking to the midwife who is also my GYN care provider, and also provided my prenatal care for Ben and Addison that I faced a huge fact:
Had I had my children in 1890 – I would be dead.
Which I guess makes me grateful for the modern technology we call a c-section.
Do I feel like I missed out? Hell ya. I would have wanted nothing more than to push a baby out into water, or experience a powerful VBAC. But it wasn’t in the cards for me. And through time and maturity I have come to accept that.
Instead I am filled with gratitude for modern medicine that allowed me to have three healthy children delivered surgically. That was one of my first parenting lessons which almost five years into being a mother is coming through clear as day.
I have changed my mind all over the place.
Car seat safety, extended breastfeeding, circumcision (again, but that is a story for another day, maybe a guest post from my husband?) childbirth, eating organic, religion, you name it I am sure I have taken a bold stance at some point and may go back on it. I may stand strong in my beliefs. Who knows. It is life…
But in being a human I own my changes. I own my parenting. I own changing my mind.
I own it all!
I used to be ashamed of changing my mind. I wouldn’t tell people of my change of mind, or I would go along pretending like oh yeah, I still fully believe in this-or-that for fear of backlash. Not only from friends and family, but from strangers… freaking strangers! on the internet.
I was easily pushed around, easily pushed into choices that were right for other peoples families, but not for mine.
I guess as we get older we develop and even greater sense of maturity. Something we get from trial and error as parents. Something that helps us really not care what others stay. Whether they are friends and family or readers on a blog.
I know with age I have grown a set of balls… call me a bitch or whatever but if I respect your choices, I expect respect in return. I guess that goes back to the lesson my mom taught me as a young child… treat others the way you want to be treated.
Life brings changes. Maturity brings changes. Experience brings changes.
I challenge anyone to say they staunchly believe in something they did five or ten years ago without any reservations or changes. And I totally understand this happens since I feel the same about my pro-choice views.
But instead of throwing these differences around or using them to hurl insults… embrace diversity!