Monday, May 16, 2011

I can still firmly say that I will never approve of them watching Spongebob

My son is in the living room watching The Wiggles.

I had a lot of ideas of what I’d allow before I had children, of what would constitute a ‘good mother.’ TV would only be educational and would be severely limited.  I would avoid the obvious annoyances of Elmo and Dora and Barney could suck it.  The Wiggles were totally on my list.

My children would eat what was in front of them or they wouldn’t eat.  We wouldn’t have chicken nuggets all the time or fish sticks.  There would be no fast food.

I would always have a wipe or something to wash their faces with and would absolutely refuse to lick my thumb to clean off an errant smudge from the sucker they wouldn’t be eating.

Juice – also limited since it’s mostly just sugar anyway.

Candy – wouldn’t happen.

I know, I know.  I want to smack myself, too.

Now while I do strive to stick with most of those rules, I’ve gone ahead and relaxed on others.  To be fair, I wasn’t the one who introduced Sebastian to Elmo and Barney.  That would be the daycare who shall not be mentioned (because I get worked up when I think about it and its awfulness).   I wasn’t the one who introduced him to fast food – that would also be that daycare.  

But I try not to stress so much about it.  I realize that my kids are pretty healthy.  I can count on one hand the number of total ear infections they’ve had combined.  (Knocking on wood!)  He loves blueberries and strawberries and cucumbers and carrots and most other fruits.  

My little guy is super smart and knows most of his alphabet already.  He talks in long sentences and you can have a really good conversation with him.  The youngest is thriving.

So I’ve relaxed.  Somewhat.  I still hate myself sometimes for putting on the TV when I should be encouraging more creative, imaginative play.  I still cringe when I hear Barney.  And I still try to limit the amount of candy and sweets he’s exposed to.

But you can’t stop the Mama guilt.  And I can’t stop looking at other mothers and comparing how they do things to how I do things.  There’s a blogger, Amanda of Soulemama, who’s kids don’t watch TV, who  lives a most natural life, and still manages to make everything look so easy.   She has the type of life I think I should have, yet still don’t.  I’ve just got to realize what I want, not what I think I should want.  Those two ideals war with themselves daily inside my head.  Do I want to be über-hippy, or do I want the opposite of that?  I guess the answer lies somewhere in the middle.  I will try to feed my kids whole grains and food with less refined sugar, but I won’t beat myself up over the occasional sucker or brownie.  And I will allow TV, but in moderation and trying to encourage educational programs over Scooby Doo.

And though I will allow him to watch it, Barney can still suck it.

Was not prepared with a wipe for this mess.  Also, that juice box has no added sugar.  Just fyi.

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