Tales of a Stay At Home Mom: Things No One Tells You About Parenthood
Children are a blessing, and parenthood is by far the hardest yet rewarding experience anyone can have. Having now been on both sides of the spectrum- no kids, living fancy free with no one to be responsible for but myself, to now, having another person completely dependent on me, I’ve realized how judgmental and critical I once was of my friends with little ones, and I’ve also realized that parenthood is almost like a secret society- there are things that no one tells you about having kids. Maybe it’s because it’s something you don’t truly understand until you’re going through it, or maybe it’s just fun for “veteran” parents to watch as new parents stumble into these happenings- an initiation if you will. Whatever the case, here are some of the top things no one tells you about the joys of parenthood:
You will never sleep again. I recall while I was pregnant, complaining that I was ready for my son’s arrival. I had several people tell me to enjoy it while I still had him in my stomach, and to get as much sleep as I could, because when he got here, sleep would be a thing of the past. I remember replying that I wouldn’t mind the lack of sleep, because I’ve always been a troubled sleeper. Fast forward two and a half years, I now know what my friends were trying to tell me. First of all, sleeping when I want to is just a thing of the past. I sleep whenever my child sleeps- that is, if I’m not using that time to clean, cook, or do the other million things I can’t during his waking hours. Further, even when I AM asleep, I’m really not. There’s always a part of me that is “awake”, listening out for noise from him, worrying if he’s okay. So yes, I’ve gotten the occasional “rest” since his birth, but actual sleep? Not so much.
Privacy? What’s that? You’ll never go to the bathroom alone again. You’ll never shower alone again. Intimacy with your mate? Better have a good lock on your door. When they are babies, you have to take them everywhere with you anyway, and when they become toddlers, they seem to think that you aren’t worthy of any alone time. Even after the first few times they bust in on you and you smarten up and start locking the door, they will stand outside the door and whine, stick their fingers under the door- they will find a way to make sure you know that, though you desire to be, you are NOT alone!
There’s no formula to raise children. Just because sleep training worked on your neighbor’s kid doesn’t mean it’ll work for you. Just because your BFF’s child was potty trained before they turned 2 doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with your 3 year old who is still struggling. ALL children are different, and they move at their own pace in everything. I came into parenthood with a lot of preconceived notions- that I would be able to exclusively breastfeed, my child would be walking well before age 1, talking in complete sentences by 2, and potty trained shortly thereafter. All I have to say is “yeah, right”. Which brings me to me next point:
You’re not in control. I remember so many BC (before children) days when I would just shake my head at the mom who couldn’t control her 2 year old’s tantrum in the grocery store. Simply shocked at the moms who complained about what their child wouldn’t eat, and so confused about the parents with the 3 year old still wearing diapers. I have now seen the light: From birth until at least the age of 3 or so, YOU HAVE NO CONTROL. Yes, you can set parameters and guidelines on what you want for them: if you don’t want them to eat junk, don’t buy it. But can you force them to eat the healthy meal you’ve prepared for them? Nope (I say this as I watch my son pick over his lunch). You can go in public with all kinds of distractions to keep them busy while you get your errands done, but can you guarantee they won’t find a reason to throw a tantrum? Absolutely not. You can sleep train your baby until you’re both blue in the face, but if they refuse to comply, what do you do? You sit up with them until they decide to go to sleep, that’s what. Potty training? Forget about it. Until they are good and ready, you better keep those diapers stocked. Until a certain age of comprehension and communication, the kid rules. I know this makes all you non-parents out there cringe, but it’s the ugly truth.
I could go on and on about some of the things I’ve learned in just the 2 ½ years I have under my belt, but these are by far my hardest lessons. Having my son is the best thing to ever happen to me- I truly believe he has taught me just as much as I’ve taught him, and I look forward to continuing to grow along with him.
Stay at Home Mom & Owner of Prime Events
Married to Jamel Davenport, Mother to the amazing Lathan
Also, Keisa and her husband, Jamel have an amazing Catering/Event Planing business called Prime Events. Their food is de-lic-ious (I’m speaking from personal experience). So check out her website and follow her fan page on Facebook you won’t regret it!