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A tiny individual is growing.

What comes next you ask? You have planned, written lists and pondered over what you realistically see for your child. Remember, this child is entering your life, not your parents, sisters, brothers, best friends or work associates. Stay positive and realistic. Let’s face it, we all want what we can’t have but, this is unproductive so, don’t do it. Every child can turn into a big strong tree, all that you need to provide is, constant love, attention, and care.
During pregnancy, it is important to relax and enjoy getting to know your baby. All babies are different so, why not get to know some things about your baby, before he/she arrives? You can start to learn some things about your baby when you take notice of the little things. Here are a few things to take note of:
1. Is the baby active or docile?
2. Are there specific times of activity and other very still times?
3. When did you first feel the baby move (this often feels like air bubbles or the flutter of butterfly wings)?
4. Are there certain foods you eat that change the activity level of the baby?
5. When you are very calm does this seem to calm the baby down?
6. Does the baby interact with you when you rub your stomach?
7. Sometimes when the baby is moving, different body parts become visible so when this happens, rub them. Does the baby respond?
8. Is the baby quiet when there is a lot of noise or, does that make the baby more active?
These are just a few things you can observe about your baby even before the arrival date. With this knowledge you will be more prepared for what comes next, which is, the baby. So, remember gather information, relax, and enjoy the quiet freedom of pregnancy, because soon, you will be confronted with a tiny individual.

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Parenting Begins

Now it is time to talk about what happens when you are starting a family. After lots of reflecting on what you believe is important to raising a healthy person, it is now time to see what is actually attainable. Be honest and do not get lost worrying about what you don’t have, but look at what you do have to offer. Remember this is your child. Each person is an individual, born into a very different home, with a completely different checklist, made up by different people and this, is where you’ll begin parenting.

The best way to conquer your fears is to be prepared and have some information about what comes next. At this time you may be creating or growing inside you a new life. With this stage too much information can be daunting and cause stress. Avoiding stress is essential, therefore take a deep breath and relax. Gathering information will make you stronger. The information you want to be aware of is that which best suits your personal checklist. Paying attention to someone else’s list will bog you down with the things you don’t have rather than what you do have. Remember everyone is different and that is where we get our individuality from, so in turn that is how your child will become an individual. Is that not what we want for their future?

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Time to start the plan.

The decision to have children has been made, or,  it could possibly have been made for you as in, surprise!  So, where do we go from here?  Well remember in the tree analogy we discussed planning, well that is what this blog will begin to do.                                                           Planning                                                                                  Try sitting down with your partner, family, friends etc. and start  brainstorming about what the best possible scenario would be for a child to enter your lives. You should come up with an overwhelming list of things that you consider important.  The list will include things like:                           1.  Stability                                                                                                                            2.  Security                                                                                                                            3.  Health                                                                                                                                4.  Money                                                                                                                               5.  Family Ties                                                                                                                      6.  Friends                                                                                                                          The list will be long and daunting but remember it is impossible to achieve everything from your list and should only be thought of as a best case scenario.   Having children is unpredictable, therefore how can we possibly try to have everything in place before having a child.  Trying to achieve the impossible is setting yourself up for failure.  Relax and do the best you can with what you have.  That is true planning.                                                                                                     Flexibility is how you weather the storms, and being  adaptable is the everyday grooming.  When something from our best case scenario changes, it doesn’t have to have a negative impact it is just something we need to keep an eye on while we alter our plan.  Plans need to change to accommodate what is happening in the present to ensure success in the future.  Remember our true goal is  that  magnificent tree.

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Becoming a Parent Lasts a Lifetime So Be Prepared

My interest with this blog is to open up a dialogue with people on everyday issues that arise in child rearing.    Children all go through specific well defined developmental stages and armed with specific strategies, guiding a child  through these stages will always give positive results.

As an introduction, I thought we should start with an analogy I use when teaching developmental psychology to Early Childhood Education Students, so here goes.  Comparing a child to a tree.  Okay, so that may sound silly, but lets see why that works.  If you plant a tree and want it to grow into a good strong tree with a root system that will stand the test of time, you need to plan.  Where do you start?

Planning

What do I need?  What kind do I want?  How big will it grow?  Will it be placed in a good location so that in 25 years it is not going to have to be removed due to poor planning?   What do I need to do to ensure it makes it through those first few years?  How much tending does it need?  What kind of tending needs to be ongoing?

Why would you need to Plan?

Well, who hasn’t seen a garden that has been meticulously maintained.  It is beautiful!  The more it is tended to, the stronger and less work  it needs to it become  an  established garden.  When a tree is watched and tended to it is usually uniform in shape, strong, healthy and able to weather any conditions.  These are the trees that last for years and years.

The results

By doing all the work early in the sapling’s life we can expect that things will happen to the tree that we cannot avoid, but we have known from the beginning that this may happen.   With all the variables that could cause problems for this tree,  our early nurturing and constant assistance makes it possible for the tree to still grow and be strong.

Start observing the trees in your neighborhood.  Look for the ones that are nurtured and compare them to the ones that were just planted with the expectation that they will grow with little or no work.  Look for the differences and what you will see is trees, lots of different trees. Some will be magnificent and some will be weak, but they will all end up full grown trees.  Which would you prefer?

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Parenting is a Lifetime Committment, Thinking Ahead and Being Proactive Allows for Endless Possibilities.