Friday, August 26, 2011

Things I know: Mothering is a Journey, Not a Race


Far too often, we read about mothers fretting over their children’s milestones. “Oh, my child is 12 months old but isn’t walking yet” or “our daughter has turned 2 years old but is not talking much”. Sounds familiar?
Of course, every mother has expectations over their child’s developmental milestones and they are important to check that your child is developing well. Also, if you notice any delay that may be of concern, the milestones can trigger you to start intervention early for your child to make the best possible progress.
However, we must remember that each child is unique, and just because Joe started walking at 9 months, it does not mean that Suzy is abnormal to start walking at 18 months {and yes, the little pumpkin only started walking around 18 months}! Although each milestone has a target age range, the actual age when a normally developing child reaches that milestone varies. 

To “get ahead in life”, I know of many parents who actually start enrolling their children in classes as young as 3 months old! No, scrape that. Some parents actually start “training” their unborn children in the womb by having them listen to music or readings to simulate their intellectual development. I am sure all of you heard of the bestselling book, Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother? Although not all Asian mothers are totally like that, I can assure you that there is some truth to that book in the way Asians raise their kids.


My mother was not one of those parents. She gave me space to grow and motivated me to pursue my individual talents and gifts. I had no pressure to excel academically {although I did pretty well thank you very much}, nor was I forced to attend 1001 other enrichment classes outside of school. For this I am grateful. My own experience has shaped how I want my little pumpkin to grow too. At 27 months, she doesn't know all her a,b,c's or count properly, but am I going to lose sleep over that? No. Because I know she eventually will. 

Very often, when we are in a race, we tend to let small insignificant things fall to the side. However, more often than not, these “insignificant” things turn out to be rather significant things indeed. Taking time out to care for a pet or to play baseball with your neighbor teaches a child important life skills like loving another being and teamwork.

I want my girl to learn by experience and to take time to smell the roses, but more importantly, I want to be there to smell it with her. Children grow up so fast, don’t you think so? Stop comparing your children. Mothering is a journey for us to enjoy every simple moment with our child. It is not a race for us to complete all the different milestones in life!

Sharing at Shae's. What else do you know? :)

27 comments:

Jessica @FoundtheMarbles said...

I love the line about being there to smell the roses with her. That is beautiful.

アンゼエリン said...

U r right, every children has their own personality...The most important, we grow together...live simply with happiness!

Kellie said...

Really great post! It's funny, but I was very much like this with Princess Ella. Maybe a bit of that came from the pressure of mum's group. However, with Baby Holly it's been whatever happens happens. We know she will get there when she's ready! x

Rhianna said...

Very well said! All so very true. Fairy wishes and butterfly kisses to you and your little pumpkin

Irene Cortez said...

I experienced being pressured to excel when I was a little girl. I totally agree with you that kids should not be pressured to reach their milestones. They should be allowed to develop at their own pace. I guess learning is much more appreciated that way. :-)

Visiting from FTLOB! :-)

Kate said...

Beautifully said :) Parenting can be very competitive can't it? And for no good reason!

Tina ~ Tina Gray {dot} Me said...

Well said. I think there is too much pressure on making our babies grow up too quickly.

Kellie said...

I try not to get too caught up with milestones.
My daughter was always in a rush to do everything, and my son is taking things at his own pace.
I'm happy with that!

Victoria said...

Cute post. I love it. It drives me nuts when people ask what my Monkey can do or can't do. Does it really matter in the grand scheme of life? They're guidelines and everyone does things at different time.

New follower from TGIF.
http://shrinkingmommy.blogspot.com

Daddy said...

Well said ...well said...:)

Faking Posh said...

Thanks for the great reminder of what is really important when raising kids!

Nicole Mariana said...

LOVE your blog! I'm now following! Please check out my blog at:
http://www.romanianprincess.com/

XoXo Nicole Mariana

Briny said...

This is so true!!

Briny
http://soberchiclifestyle.blogspot.com/

Jill said...

What a lovely post! I totally agree with you that you have to let your children grow at their own pace and enjoy their discoveries along the way. As they get older I don't think there's anything wrong in pushing them to try and experience things - to help them overcome fears and worries, but there's a fine line between that and pushing them into doing things YOU want them to rather than what they want or is good for them!

Just stopped by from the weekend blog hop. I’m following you now and hope you’ll stop by my blog sometime too! Have a lovely weekend.
Jill @ Creating my way to Success
http://www.jembellish.blogspot.com/

Deborah said...

I really enjoyed reading this. Yes, parenting can be so competitive ... 'the parenting wars'... and every child is different and has their own pace for development. This post is a great reminder to enjoy our kids for who they are. Lovely. :)

Ai Sakura said...

very heartening to know that other parents feel the same way too :)

sometimes being in parents' "groups" {like reading other parents' blogs) can bring out the competitive spirit in us, but I also think it can help us to be better parents together, don't you reckon so? :)

Halina said...

I do so agree with you on this! I don't see how those mothers do it. Where are the happy moments that the child will remember as his or hers childhood?

Also I don't find the that tigermama practice good for the child's later own involvement in their own activities. If your constantly expect your parents to be the one organizing all the time, what will happen if you get out there in the world some day and don't have a clue what to do?

Luisa Rodríguez said...

So true!

I got here through For The Love Of Blogs. Glad I bumped into your blog! Maybe you could come visit me too one of these days..

Have a very nice weekend!


mustbeliberating.blogspot.com

KERRY said...

Hi! I stumbled upon your blog and have started following along :)
What a gorgeous little girl!! I loved this post, it is a lovely reminder to slow down and not to compare with others. I totally agree with you...
Have a great week!

Kari said...

Last night I was on FTLOB checking out the post for comment love day, but I wasn't able to comment from my iPad. I clicked on the link for your blog and realized that I have been reading your Mom's blog for quite some time now! I even voted for you when you were doing the mall challenge! I love her cooking posts! Loved this post too! So much time we spend worrying about what we want our kids to do in the future we don't spend the time appreciating the present with them! Happy Comment Love Day!

Judy Haughton-James said...

My mom recently came across the baby books that she had of my twin sister and me. I learnt some interesting facts. Even although we were identical twins Janine did everything before me. Mom says she was not concerned at all about this. Interesting post. Have a good week.
Judy from Jamaica

CarliAlice @ GG2Life said...

Very nice post. Yes, each child does develop differntly but still watch. My middle child didn't speak until three and he was in speach therapy for years. I wish I had said something earlier about him not speaking. He's an adult now though and totall fine.

I'm a new follower from Not So Moody Monday. http://www.grandmasguidetolife.blogspot.com

Tonya the Hobo Girl said...

Hopping over from FTLOB.

This is a such a great post! I also think it is so important to let your child be their own person and experience the love of childhood.

Mandi said...

I love this so much. My 2-year-old is not nearly as articulate as his brother was when he was this age, and sometimes I compare the two and worry about that. Your post reminded me that every child is different. Thanks! :)

Heavenly Savings said...

Cute Blog! I loved it so much I decided to follow! Happy Monday!! I would love for you to stop by and check out my blog as well! If you like it you can follow back! Thanks! Hope to blog with you again soon!

http://heavenlysavings.net

Kim@Chubby Cheeks Thinks said...

Thanks for putting this into perspective. Sometimes we forget how precious time is...i know I do! :)

Thanks for stopping by and linking up! I'm following you back!

Kim
http://www.chubbycheeksthinks.com

Ai Sakura said...

wow so many different experiences. thank you for sharing them with me :)