The importance of setting boundaries for your toddler

Thinking about starting to discipline your toddler is overwhelming , especially if it is your first child, both of you are basically unsure of what is supposed to happen now haha.

Firstly you need to figure out what you are comfortable with, and what you believe is “discipline”, with that being said, don’t lend your ear easily to mom groups out there with millions of opinions, all which are , well , not yours. They don’t know your home, your family or your parenting style. Once you have decided how you are going to set boundaries for your toddler, you need to grow a thicker skin overnight lol. Setting boundaries is not only necessary for your household, but your toddler needs it, needs to learn what is acceptable and what not, when things get difficult (and they will) you need to remind yourself that you are trying to raise a well rounded human being who, with the right skills, and go out and conquer the world.

I strongly believe that toddler were put on this earth to test us, and push our limits as far as possible and then some more. The most challenging part is knowing when to take a minute and comfort them and when to draw the line. A lot of the time, the crying spell is due to them being upset, and not knowing how to process their emotions, our role as parents are to help them and teach them to calm themselves down without getting what they want. Distraction usually works the best, or to simply let them cry it out until they realize it is not happening lol, it all depends on your child’s threshold and how much they can take before you reach the point of no return (which usually involves hysterical crying).

As with every stage of parenting; it all just makes you stronger and teaches you something new. One way or another we will get them and ourselves through this lol . If one of you found a foolproof way of disciplining your toddler let me know and we can swap war stories!

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Adulthood VS Parenthood

By now we all know that growing up is a trap and you should avoid it at all costs !

Adulthood is so much more difficult than any of us ever thought, your parents always tell you that you need to enjoy being little , enjoy school because working is horrible, enjoy not having to cook or having to pay bills, yet all we see is the illusion of “freedom” that adulthood supposedly brings. When in reality, the sad truth is that you cant always do what you want, and you actually had much more freedom when you were in school, freedom from worries, anxiety, financial troubles, marriage issues, stress, self doubt and the list goes on and on. Not to say that life as a teenager is this day and age is always easy, but it sure beats being in your late 20’s.

This all seems like child play the moment you have your first child, and keeps upping itself with each child after that. Being responsible for someone else’s life is so intense , and the responsibility to raise a somewhat decent human being in this world is a huge challenge, once you start thinking about all of this it feels like you cant breathe and you have no idea how you will handle it all, yet you just do. You have no excuses when you have a child, no “day off” when you need time to yourself or you need a break, you learn to power through with a smile on your face like nothing is wrong. Because thats what you do when you are a parent.

To me, thats the difference between adulthood and parenthood, I cant speak for anyone else, but I changed so much when I became a mother, I never really felt “grown up” until I met this tiny little human that changed literally everything in my life (not saying that not having children is in any way a bad thing, or the wrong a choice or a choice at all, I am simply sharing my own experience).

Parenting is both the most rewarding and the most terrifying thing I have ever done, and I would do it all over again if it means I get to have this amazing little human in my life ❤️

Being confident as a mother

I cant be the only mom whose heart breaks a little when her toddler runs away from her to grab onto dad or granny’s leg instead.

I have always been a bit critical of myself, but somehow becoming a mother has made me put even more pressure on myself. We are all human at the end of the day, and I strongly believe that if you had any underlying issues with yourself or with other relationships before you became a parent, motherhood is sure to magnify those issues and turn them into full blown shortcomings.

Motherhood is also a time to addressing these issues for once and all, and really work through them. Most of the time , just acknowledging an issue is enough for it to disappear , and other times it takes a bit more work, but it is ALWAYS worth it. For me the issue was not being a good mother , and not being enough for my children (Although I do know that this is a fear for most moms, it was a bit more than that for me).

So much so that I never took a moment for myself because I felt guilty for putting myself first (even though thats not true , and taking a moment is not putting yourself first really, its just human), I put these ridiculous expectations on myself as a mother that no one would ever live up to. It took me quite some time and a lot of effort on my part to let go of this, and to just be who I am, warts and all.

At the end of the day , we all feel like everyone else is silently giving out scores on our parenting, while we are our own worst critics.

Once you realize that it only matters what your child thinks (with the exception of teenage years) and nothing else. Let “them” think what they want ! You are happy right!? That is the only thing that matters ! Do it your way !

Unexpected fears about a second child

Having a second baby should be easy right ? You know what to expect, you know what to do, and you have now found your feet as a mom, so it should all just be a breeze. Uh ?! …. No!!

The one thing that does seem to be easier is the waiting, I am so busy with my toddler that I don’t really think about the new baby and what it will be like all the time, its almost as if I have not really come to terms with it all haha, every now and then it hits me and this wave of excitement hits me.

But that is about the only thing that is easier so far; somehow I can’t imagine my life with two kids, I am already so so busy with her that I can’t even imagine how busy I would be with her and a newborn. I think it is the whole thing that you can’t imagine the change, how different your life will look, all you know is that it will look different. I think we are all creatures of habit, which means that we want to know what to expect, what is coming next.

But thats just it isn’t it? Life is unexpected, you can’t plan for every little thing because that would just make life way too easy haha. learning to let go and let God, has been life changing, realizing that we are all fragile and we cannot control every aspect of life or of motherhood is somehow freeing . Freeing to allow you to life your life without worrying about every “what if” that comes along.

Motherhood is magical, it pushes your limits and breaks down all your fears and expectations, and instead, replaces it with an unexplainable amount of irrational love. And lets face it, none of us would change a damn thing 👌🏻

It makes you a different kind of strong, so I say bring it on !

The importance of playing with your toddler

I get so much joy out of spending time with my daughter these days, I just absolutely love this age , having a little toddler running around is so daunting some days, and just so so overwhelmingly cute the rest of the time.

She demands so much attention from me , that I rarely get to anything else in the house haha, she only plays with her toys if I sit down with her, she wants to sit on my lap or have me pick her up all the time. Even thinking about my days make me tired haha.

Some days I honestly get frustrated and short tempered with her, until I sit down and think of everything from her point of view; she has mastered so many skills lately and learned so many new ways to show me what she wants, yet no one really understands her, she wants to say so much and do so much but she just cant yet, and I can see the frustration on her face sometimes (hence the new tantrums we have been experiencing).

Every little thing that does not go her way upsets her so much that it takes about half an hour for her to calm down, then she finally has fun, chases our dog and then BAM !!! She tuns into the piano , and the tears start all over again. Sometimes it feels like you just can’t win and I think she feels exactly the same way.

Thats why it is so important to pick her up when she comes running to me for the millionth time a day, she needs me to tell her that it is all okay, that she can be however she needs to be and I will still love her at the end of the day, no matter what. We as parents are their safe place, coming from a background where it feels like I do not have that, it is very important for me that my children know they can always come “home” that I will always accept them 100% and will always put them first.

On a lighter note; on these days when I don’t feel like playing and she is being extremely difficult, playing with her on the floor is actually the one thing that takes my mind off of everything and make us both relax. There is just something about stacking blocks that puts the whole world into perspective.

Spending quality time with your toddler is not only important for them, but also for us ❤️

Does it get easier as they get older ?

A few months back, when my baby was about 8 months old; she started teething, I honestly thought this is it, it cant get any worse than this, she wasn’t sleeping, she had no appetite and she was extremely moody.

Fast forward to the present where she is 14 months old, and I wish it was as “difficult” as it was then haha. I think it has the same affect as the “I wish I was as fat as I thought I was in high school” bit . My baby has this thing where she will cut 4 teeth in about 3 weeks of utter hell, then she takes a few months break of no teething. Then ….. dum dum dum , cuts two molars and two lateral incisors at the same time !! Send help !

She is getting so sick, she is so sore at night and barely sleeps, wakes up crying several times and basically is just miserable all the time. It makes you feel so helpless , it feels like nothing helps, nothing eases her or makes her more comfortable (trust me, I have done everything and still do just incase it helps a little bit), it is as if the further along we get with this teething business, the worse it gets ! 🙈

Beating yourself up because your child got sick again for the 7th time in a few months seems to also be a new state of normal, we live 70km’s from the nearest town, she stays home with me , and yet, she still gets sick ! So for those moms that say their children get sick from daycare, trust me, they would still get sick if they weren’t in daycare.

No guts no glory I say, having children can be so intense and challenging but so rewarding and worth it at the same time, confusing right ? Welcome to motherhood !

Remembering that you were a person before you had kids

So as you all know I am pregnant with my second baby, and I cant even explain all the ways that I underestimated being in my first trimester with a toddler.

My husband is gone this week and the amount of endurance it takes to not throw up while you are dressing your baby for bed – is next level and I kind of feel like a rockstar after that session haha ! Not feeling well while having to still be the best mother you can be, takes effort , and let me tell you something; if you are one of those moms that are going through a tough time and still manage to play with your kids and put a smile on their face , you are one AMAZING mom , and don’t you forget that !

BUT ! Being a good mother sometimes means that you need to know when to put yourself first, never when your child needs you , and not saying that you take your interests above that of your child’s , but in the sense that you know when you need a break, and know that you can’t pour from an empty cup. Recharging for half a day or even a few days with friends does not make you a bad parent, sometimes a few moments for yourself is what resets the clock on your parenting, and gives you renewed, more positive energy for your toddler or your newborn.

Then you get me; I am a stay at home mom and I go into town to do my nails and the usual errands, I don’t have to rush home because my husband and mother in law are looking after Paige. But somehow in town, I feel guilty for not being there, I feel like I need to hurry up because she is my responsibility and not theirs and they have things to do. After which I usually rush everything and head home, only to find that everyone is fine and having fun haha. No one died , no one got hurt.

Although these are all normal “mom” feelings, sometimes it is okay to let go, to let yourself take a few deep breaths and let yourself enjoy something that does not involve being a mother or a wife, just a person, an individual, with interests, dreams and a person who can have grown up intellectual conversations haha.

Practice makes perfect, and that is what it will take to learn to have a balance with this whole motherhood thing, letting yourself have some time without feeling (too) guilty, and to still feel like you are not failing as a mother in doing so.

Being a mother is hard enough as it is, we do not need to drive ourselves crazy (er) by forgetting that we also matter. Take that break ! You deserve it ❤️