Wednesday, January 9, 2008

ramblings on parenthood

So we have settled back into the home routine and recovered from our crazy and wonderful holiday travels and celebrations. I am back at work this week and we have re-entered the world of baby playdates. We attended the library baby time on Monday with Joanne. Rory loved it. She was a bit put off by all the playing- she takes her reading very seriously and was a little confused as to why we were all singing and playing and not concentrating on the books- we might have a little academic on our hands. She also impressed the other mommies by her insistance on sharing things with other babies- I think all the time we have spent telling Owen to share things with the babies has rubbed off on her- because now she spends most of her time trying to give other people toys. We attended OMSI with some friends Alyssa and Charlie today and she has her sign class tomorrow- A very busy week in the life of a 9.5 month old. So since I have a rare moment with Pat gone and Rory in bed I feel the need to comment on our visit to OMSI today. Since Rory doesn't walk around yet, I end up sitting in the infant corner with lots of time to observe the other kids and moms. It seems that I have been thinking a lot lately about "parenting styles" and where I/we fit in. It seems that it has come up a lot and people have asked me a lot lately about my mommy style. To quote Juno "I don't really know what kind of girl (insert mom) I am". After watching the moms today, I guess I know more about the kind of mom I am not, then the kind I am. I am NOT the mom that spent the entire time video taping her 11 month old. This mom's only interaction with her son was to tisk (also something I am not, a tisker) him when he tried to put anything in his mouth. Should make fascinating HOURS of video tape. I am not the constant nurser mom. This mom sat on a bench while her 1.5 year old went about playing only to return every 10-15 minutes for a quick 30 snack. I am not a 7-11!! I am not (well at least not today) the totally frazzeled mom- this lady had what looked to be a BRAND new baby strapped to her chest, several different bags strapped to her body, a 2 year old on her hip and an appearance of utter shock. I felt like I should ask if she needed any help, only because I am sure I have at some point had that same look and will more then likely be there again in the future. I am not the gasper mom- this one followed her learning to walk child around gasping at every teetor, on this scale I am the complete opposite- Rory took a header out of the foam circle that holds the colored balls and I just sat there- several moms looked at me like I was completely heartless. I figure Rory will let me know when she needs me, she got herself up from her header- it just took her a minute. there weren't even any tears. I also felt judging eyes (okay that might be a bit dramatic) when I let Rory chew on the toys from the water table and get fairly soaking wet. I am not sure I could keep things out of her mouth, even if I tried, and I am not sure what the point of a water table is if you are going to be obsessed with trying to keep them dry- I guess I just have lower standards! There were several moms that I think fit into the category I like to call "urban hip". Babies wearing baby legs, great shoes, and clothes that I think were great and that my mom would think didn't match. Letting their kids maul eachother in the name of letting them figure it out. Like I said, I am not sure where I fit into all this, and I am the last person to judge anyone else's parenting style, but it is helpful to sit and observe how others do it, both to clarify my own style and see examples of what I want to avoid and what I want to strive for. I apologize for the agonizingly long entry that seems fairly narsisstic, but I am pretty sure that is the nature of blogging in general. If you have any insights into my parenting style as you see it, please share, I am always interested in others perceptions! I swear parenting is just one big social experiment! I will upload more pics soon as miss rory is starting to get some hair! that is just a teaser so you will come back to my blog even after this post....~Britt


Grandma Klinkhammer said...

How fun to read your observations. I recognized all of those moms you described. Lots of different styles which makes it all so interesting!You are a caring mom and a loving mom. Rory's really lucky to have a mom who is giving her all sorts of delightful experiences! Keep up the good work, Mom!

Shahnaz said...

I love this posting! It reads just like a journal, and I love that.

As for what type of parent you are...who knows how to label things? You are a wonderfully interactive mom who has a great balance between being right there for you baby when she needs you and backing off a little as she seeks her oh-so-important independence. You are loving and playful and doting. Most importantly, from Rory's perspective you are the absolute best mom there is!

Seth Marbin said...

Hey Britt - sounds like you are the kind of mom who is thinking deeply about what kind of mom she wants to be! Good stuff! :)