Almost two years ago, when I was around seventeen weeks pregnant with SB, I wrote a post entitled “Those Little Moments”, about the moments when – in the midst of all the uncertainty and fear and the feeling that I’d never be able to cope – I realised that I was going to do my best for my baby, and every piece of criticism I took or doubt I heard only made me more determined.
Two years on, here are more little moments – moments that make me realise that I made the right decision, and that together with D, we have done our very best for our daughter, and she is no less loved or cared for than any other much-wanted baby.
- When she sings songs that we’ve taught her, like ‘Row Row Row Your Boat’ and ‘Head, Shoulders, Knees & Toes’, and we realise that she is learning from us.
- When people compliment us on her smile and her nature, and even though she can be a terror at home, with diva strops and tantrums, she is so lovely and sweet to everyone she meets, and we just burst with pride. To have people praising our parenting as the reason for her sweet nature is such an important affirmation.
- When she walks over with a book, and sits with me while I read it to her. For all the TV she watches, I’m so happy to know that she still loves books as much as D and I do, and wants us to read to her.
- When she’s crying, and it seems like a tantrum, but we can hear the different type of crying and know that it’s something else. This happened today, and it turned out to be teething. Once she’d had some dentinox on, she was like a different baby. I always feel so proud, and confident that we are good parents, when we’re able to do something like that to make her feel better.
- When she snuggles up to me, patting my back and saying ‘Ahh’ in her usual adorable way. Just the fact that she wants to be close to me makes me feel like a good parent – and it proves that everyone who said our bond would be affected by formula feeding or by me going to university when she was younger was wrong, because our bond is so incredibly strong.
- When she walks over, with no prompting, and gives me a big kiss. That’s one of my favourite things ever.
These moments remind me that the circumstances in which we became parents don’t really matter – it’s what we do as parents that is really important, and there’s no reason that young, unprepared parents can’t raise amazing children – I know of women who had children at a young age, and those children are now off to university. It isn’t our age that defines us as parents – it’s so much more than that. It’s our attitudes, our determination, the time we put in, the love we have for our children and the happiness we bring to their lives (just as they bring happiness to ours) that makes a good parent.
Looking at SB now, I don’t think we’re doing too badly.