Why is it we push our children to do things we really don’t want them to do?
By some standards, Monkey really doesn’t need solids until he’s 18 months old – my breastmilk should provide all the nutrients he needs. Yet we started feeding him rice cereal at 4 months. Which means he’s breastfeeding less (fewer free calories for mama), creating epic messes (spinach puree does not come out of clothing very easily), and making some nasty poop (although the array of colors in his diapers these days is impressive). So why did we do it? Because we want him to be a good eater. (Exactly what that means, I’m not real sure.) Besides, he seems to really like solid foods. So we keep doing it.
And then there’s the mobility issue. Why the hell we’re helping Monkey sit upright is a mystery to me. He loves sitting Indian style (is that term PC anymore?) with his hands steadying him on his ground in front. Sure, it’s cute. A few times he’s fallen over sideways, which is also cute. But yesterday he fell forward onto his hands and knees, looked for two seconds like he might just crawl off, then went down to his tummy. Hubby and I rewarded this behavior with adulation, laughter and applause. What the fuck are we thinking? Do you know what happens when a kid becomes mobile? He gets into EVERYTHING!!! (Note to self – pick up outlet covers at Home Depot this weekend.)
Parents must be insane – we have to be, right? We spend all this time helping our children develop, knowing full well where that leads. To more dangers for them. To less attachment to us. And, one day, to moving on with their lives. I know Monkey will always need me, but it makes me sad to know he won’t be dependent on me the way he was when he was born.
And THIS is the biggest irony ever. I HATED my first couple of months as a mom, so much so that I wanted to give Monkey away to somebody, anybody, who could handle motherhood better than me. Now, I remember those days with longing, and I’ll likely recall the present headaches with a combination of joy and sadness.
What the hell kind of messed up drug am I on anyways?