The transition stages are tough. I must admit, motherhood is nothing short of hard. So many changes happen and then more changes happen again. First you go through the milestones where your little one begins to crawl, sit-up, walk, and even utters their first word or two (hopefully it’s Mama or Dada!). But then there are the other (more advanced) stages, where you begin to have moments of self-doubt. You’ve watched (and aided) your child thus far and it’s evident that you’ve succeeded. But what about those milestones that seem harder to master?
Lately, I’ve been extra cautious about making sure that my little guy is “up to standard”or on the same level of other kids his age, to say the least. Now that he’s 2 I find myself constantly researching ways to enhance his vocabulary, get him into routine with eating, sleeping, etc. Oh and let’s not forget, getting us all ready for potty training. Sometimes I feel that I’m beginning so late. But my little guy’s personality isn’t always the easiest and he’s one that hates to be forced to do anything. He’s definitely “light” of being completely stubborn. Haha! But it’s so hard to focus on doing things your way when everyone does things at different time frames. I’m learning that following my own instinct is what’s best, but it’s still pressure when your child becomes topic of conversation which often times are met with everyone else’s expectations on how far your child should already be when it comes to certain things. Granted, my little guy is super smart, witty, and knows his STUFF! Ask him to show you any color, letter in the alphabet, or any object, and you have yourself a scholar. However, he doesn’t talk at all. Out of frustration he says “Mom” or “Dad”, and even “No”, but nothing else. While it’s nothing too concerning since I know for sure that he understands fully, it definitely still leaves me feeling like I’ve failed to enhance his vocabulary enough. But how can this be done when his personality (and stubbornness) gets in the way? Do I just wait for him to be ready on his own?
He didn’t start walking until right before he was 1. Funny thing is, despite all the practice and “egg-ons” that we did, he just decided that he wanted to do it on his own. And that he did. He just started walking out of nowhere and the rest was history. So am I overthinking this? Now that he’s 2, I find myself focused on his eating habits and sleeping times more closely. I’ve been trying to get him on a schedule, but then I’m not sure how I really feel about a rigid schedule. Isn’t that too restricting? Aren’t there so many factors that come into play daily? What if we have a family outing or there’s some interruption in our schedule? Anyway, I also notice that he’s a lover of sweets. I’ve read that this is normal for young kids, but is something that needs to be tamed before they get older in order to avoid it from becoming a true habit. I’ve definitely changed his liquid consumption to mostly water and juice maybe once or twice a day. Plus, I’m currently looking at recipes that are great for breakfast, lunches, and dinners. A lot of changes, right?
Then I read that sippy cups weren’t good for their teeth when used for long periods of time, so we’ve decided to change over to regular drinking cups going forward. He’ll only use sippy cups when we’re outdoors or something. Yes, that means more spills for us to clean, but hey! That’s all a part of parenting. Moreover, the hardest thing to change has been breastfeeding! Yes, I still breastfeed. Crazy, right? It’s definitely not a matter of my little guy wanting breast milk as a sole source of food, however, his dependency lies in the “comfort factor”. He uses breastfeeding as a way of comfort, whether that means sleeping, calming down, relieving his anxiety when in public, etc.
Now, I’ve been minimizing breastfeeding sessions, but it’s super hard to fully remove it. I understand that everything takes time, but Gosh! I’ll just keep trying until it’s a success, I guess. I have no choice. He’s 2 and I’ve been doing this for 2 years and I think it’s time that my body gets a break. Anyway, the good thing is that once he learns a particular routine, he gets use to it and masters it lovely. So I know that in time, all of these things will be the new norm. Much like his preference to have his dad give him a bathe, brush his teeth, eat breakfast with, go outdoors with, and also play with. It’s so funny to watch him identify with his dad and enjoy certain things exclusively with him. As for me, he shares the bond of being my little helper, cuddle buddy during TV time, preferred dresser when putting on clothes or person who does his hair, and even “eating time” sometimes. Understanding your child has been a lesson for me. Of course, there are moments that are frustrating, annoying, and even overwhelming, but motherhood has it’s great waves of laughter, smiles, heart-melting moments, and so much more that all deem worth it.
Having a 2 year old is a real test in parenting. The terrible two’s are real, but I’ve also realized that the trick to it is by calming them down during it’s very onset. When you see your little one getting ready to be upset, just distract or deflect. It works 99% of the time for me. So the terrible two’s end up being not TOO terrible, but they are still terrible. Haha! But I hear that it just isn’t when they’re 2, but this goes onward. But that’s a whole other post! Haha!
All in all, transition is hard. Parenting is hard. And Motherhood is especially HARD. While there are a ton of great advice, must-do’s, and people telling you how things should be done; it’s so important to understand that this is your journey with your little one and the both of you are fully aware of how to make this thing work. In addition, every child learns and excels at a different pace. Personality, exposure, and temperament are definite factors. Just trust yourself and trust your child’s timing. It’ll happen at lightning speed once they switch into “Go mode”. So, like you, I’ve struggled with Motherhood and meeting the demands of what is expected. But I’m learning to understand that I am enough. Each day my little guy does subtle things that remind me of this fact. So, understand that you are enough too! There’s no pamphlet or handbook which outlines a blueprint for how parenting should be done. Effort, Love, and willingness to learn is all it takes.
Thanks so much for reading. Cheers to Motherhood/Parenthood!
Have you dealt with any struggles with transitioning your little one(s)?
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