Before I was a mom my personality teetered on a precipice between being a neurotic Type-A and the more laid back roll-with-the-punches Type-B. My natural inclination is to be organized, on top of things and a little bit high strung, but I’ve tried to fight it, because it makes me feel crazy and not very much fun to be around. I had done a fairly good job chilling out about life…until my baby arrived and now I have been hurtled off the cliff and into full on Type-A territory.
Any new mom (or really any mom period) can admit that life with a baby can be more than a little chaotic at times and my way of coping? Control as many aspects of it as I possibly can. We must be on a sleep schedule, we must have a scheduled reading time daily, we have to stick with our predetermined bed time routine even if it’s totally inconvenient, because it’s routine of course. Plan, plan, plan…follow, follow, follow. It was making me rigid and inflexible and I wasn’t listening to my baby’s cues or having any fun with her because I was so caught up in sticking to a plan all the time. But, recently I think I’ve started to emerge from my Type-A fog thanks to a little weekend getaway and a life lesson from my baby.
We flew down to California last weekend and spent time with some friends for the weekend. In the days leading up to our trip I was super stressed out. There were so many things to pack, so many things to think about, Fern caught a cold and all I could think about was the stress of having our daily schedule thrown off. I was certain it was going to be a disaster. Even though I tried to play it cool on the outside, inside I was a wreck.
The weekend finally came and things didn’t go perfectly. There were meltdowns on the plane, TSA tore apart my carefully organized carry-on bag, and nap schedules went out the window. But, you know what? The world didn’t end. We still had fun with our friends. We went on a long walk and saw some chickens, we ate yummy food and we even (literally) stopped to smell the roses in a beautiful park. These were adventures outside our daily routines and I loved seeing my daughter’s sweet face light up as she enjoyed every moment. She didn’t care that nap time had been relegated to quick half hour sleeps here and there in her car seat – she just enjoyed the moments. It was then that I realized I could learn a thing or two from her outlook.
I’m realizing that parenthood is a fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants kind of endeavor and that’s ok. It’s time to stop and enjoy the ride.
Has your baby ever taught you a life lesson?