I know it is April Fools Day but I have nothing to joke about. Boo, boring I know. But April is a significant month for me!
First of all, it is a dear friend of mine’s birthday today! You know who you are! She continues to inspire me every day, every new chapter of her life. She just owns it. I am in awe of her endless creativity and ability to be open and raw through words or portraits. She is a hell of a gal and I hope no one gives her shit today so she can enjoy her day in peace!
Also, this year on April 24th is my 5 Year Anniversary of when I become a Buddhist. Coming from zero religious background, I think I never thought I needed something like that to guide, teach or tell me what to do. Oh how wrong I was. As wrong as any 16-20 year old person who thinks they know everything I guess.
I am so very grateful for it and the friend who introduced me to it 5 years ago.
Now, 2 years ago, on April 23rd, I went into the hospital to be induced to have my son! Here my husband and I thought, and my family from out of town thought, that meant I would be having my son on April 24th! By Buddhist birthday! What?
My son had other plans. He was not sharing his birthday with mine. Nope. After 2 rounds of pitocin, 2 separate 24 hour intervals of not eating or drinking, he was born on April 26th.
So now my beautiful baby boy will be 2. Two. Also known as Terrible Twos. There are days when I sincerely have to remind myself that we are only going through this once.
We started going to a Montessori based preschool one day a week and I am learning all kinds of things about how to teach kids, and letting them lead the way. Not everything has to be fed to them. They can naturally learn by doing. I really like this approach. It is very different from what I remember.
The part I have trouble with is the parts that I need to learn for myself. I have realized a few things about myself that I do not like.
- I am a “no” mom. I say it all the fucking time. I say it even before anything really happens. At class one day, the teacher said, if they hear it all the time, it won’t mean anything when it matters.
- I am scared a lot. I get scared when my son is exploring. I have the house very well child proofed, all the chemicals are high high high that I need a step stool to get to. Baby gates, plug protectors, locks on cabinets etc.
- Even if I am aware of what I saying at whatever volume, sometimes, I just raise my voice. And I instantly regret it. I feel like a failure to myself and for my son. Even though, his reaction to me raising my voice is laughter. Not like giggles either, like maniacal evil plot master of the world laughing.
With Facebook and the plethora of mom groups, I asked “Hey any advice for a first time mom and getting through like the next 10 years?” Funny as it sounds, I need help from people who have made it to the other side.
I kid you not, the answer, wine.
I get it. There are nights I am like counting down until my sons bedtime because I know then I can have a little glass of warm in my belly, everything is fine goodness.
But I also felt like, well fuck, I have addiction in my family and I am not trying to have that cycle repeat itself.
Still looking for answers, I opened a book I bought a few months ago when I was consistently not trying to pull my hair out. Its called “Happy Parents, Happy Kids.” It is written by SGI President, Daisaku Ikeda.
“Parents need to accept the way children live their lives.” “Children naturally possess the ability to overcome hardships.” “If parents constantly scld their children without explanation, the children will eventually react simply out of fear.”
Those are just a few lines that struck me. I am/was/trying not to scold all the time. He goes on to talk about children being about to sense concern and knowing when a mom is scolding with concern, they know it must be serious.
Also, he talks about just how you speak to them could be motivating or damaging. My son at 2, may not understand my words, but will understand my tone.
I have a lot to work on. I want my son to be happy. I want him to curious and passionate and explore.
I want my heart to be that heart. The heart of a sun, of hope, and faith for my family.
Spring is all about renewal right? This mama definitely needs to be renewed.