Becoming the Happiest Mom: Trust Your Gut

I had my first son in 2004. Even though I had read all the parenting books and absorbed advice from every relative and stranger, I was still overwhelmed when I had to leave the hospital with my "Sun" child. The nurse handed him to me and said, "you can go home now." I thought, "are they going to really trust me with this precious child, I have no experience!"  

Chapter 3 of the Happiest Mom talks about trusting your gut; some people refer to it as instincts or intuition or that strange feeling in your stomach but regardless of what you call it, it is unlikely to lead you down the wrong path.  We all want to be successful parents so we spend a great deal of time conducting research and getting advice.  Sometimes the advice is unsolicited and not helpful and an appropriate response is necessary. Unfortunately, I always seem to think of a good response 5 minutes too late. I think that Meagan has either been bitten by the nice bug or she has really mastered the art of retaining her inner peace and not becoming defensive.  For example, she would respond to a childcare provider who says,"I really think that she should be potty trained by now" with "I talked to my pediatrician, and she agreed that it is better to wait until she is older." Great advice but I would have said, "If you didn't want to change diapers, you should have chosen a different profession!" Just kidding! That is what I thought; my actual response was "let's keep him in the 3 year old class for a few more weeks and when he is potty trained, he can join his peers in the 4 year old class." I was able to respond this way because of experience with my first child. I felt pressured to potty train him and my sweetie would hide in a corner or behind a sofa to take care of his needs in peace. It was frustrating at the time but now I say, "good or him!" He used the potty when he was ready and not a minute before.

Words of wisdom for today:
  • Don't let anyone shake your confidence in your own judgment
  • If you read something that conflicts with your parenting philosophy, ask yourself: Is what I'm doing working?
  • Beware of mothers, mother-in-laws and parents with older kids who have selective memories and will of say,"when Johnny was 4, he was the perfect toddler," Don't believe it!
  • It is normal to want advice from others; consider the advice, conduct your research but go with what feel right for you and your family.
  • If you don't like any of the advice in this blog post, ignore it :-).
My gut is telling me to get off the computer and go watch Kung Fu Panda with the boy, and since I always trust my gut, I am signing off.