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The one parenting thing I have done right

I’ll be the first to admit that we have sort of meandered through this whole parenting lark

In fact if you look back we have had patches of being really quite useless at it

It started early – turned out that I had been pregnant with Bigger for a month longer than I had realised (yes interestingly pregnancy hormones can make ovulation tests look positive too… who knew?) and that month had encompassed some rather exuberant nights out… Still it did mean that I leapt forward from 7 to 11 weeks in the course of one scan appointment

I clearly remember being left in what felt like unseemly haste by everyone after Littler was born and the two of us realising that, despite Bigger still being in nappies and having 18 months of nappy changing experience, that we had absolutely no recollection of how to change a newborn nappy. Only took us three attempts to get it right but in our defence we had had quite an exciting morning and Mr M isn’t good if he doesn’t have a chance to wake up properly

There are moments when we look at the girls and think we’re doing alright but mostly these are rapidly followed by someone throwing a monster tantrum or something going terribly wrong so we’ve learnt not to be too smug and accept that, whilst we are trying hard and doing ok-ish, we aren’t going to be re-writing the parenting manual any time soon

Except perhaps in one tiny area

There is one thing that I think I have done well and that I’m secretly rather proud of

When Bigger was born I remember a friend of my parents back when I was small telling me how each of her children had a song that she would sign to them at night that was sort of their signature song – I was determined that I would have one for her and over the next few weeks ‘you are my sunshine’ became her song

I sang her that song every night at bedtime, usually whilst stroking her hair or nursing her

When Littler came along we settled on ‘the way you look tonight’ as her song although typically she has decided that she prefers her sister’s song (but of course…)

Bigger has not been well for the last few days – having confidently congratulated ourselves on a half term without lots of coughs and colds we’ve been hit by A Great Big Bug. Typically

Bigger is nearly 6, she’s grown up and no longer my teeny tiny baby but one thing still remains from those nights sitting in the rocking chair singing to her – if I sit and stroke her hair and sing her song to her she will fall fast asleep before I have finished the song

I don’t know how it works, I just know that it does work – whatever association there is with that song works and can send her to sleep and that is why this is the one parenting thing I have done right, with a couple of minutes of a silly song that I must have sung a 1000 times I can make my child sleep

Magic

Score one to me on the good parenting stakes

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5 comments to The one parenting thing I have done right

  • how lovely! I wish I had a song now! I think things like that are far more important that having nappies on the right way round (although as an only child who does not have children yet I may not be the best judge – but sounds like A-class parenting to me!)

  • Tim

    That’s great! (And I’m sure it’s not the only thing you’ve got right!)

    We had songs for each of our three kids, which we allowed fate to determine by virtue of me setting up a playlist on my iPod and whichever song was playing at the moment of birth became that child’s song. (Right Here Waiting/Richard Marx, Nothing Compares 2 U/Sinead O’Connor, Piece of my Heart/Erma Franklin, seeing as you asked – I was pretty chuffed with that as a set.) But we’ve never had a signature song to sing to them. Given how bad sleepers all three of ours have been, I really wish we’d done that. Bad father … 🙁

  • Aww, I sing Caravan to mine – gets them and me off to snoozeland nicely x

  • That’s a great thing you did! Of course there may be a problem later in life when they’re out and about and that song comes on the radio or something and they just fall asleep right where they are! 😉

    I commented recently on another blog something to the effect that even though most of us parents aren’t going to be featured in the book of perfect parents anytime soon, we can console ourselves in the knowledge that most of our kids aren’t going to be featured in the book of perfect kids either!

  • oh my. I’ve come over all hormonal and weepy. That’s the loveliest thing I’ve read in such a long time.

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