No one ever tells you the ins and outs of parenting. Sure, some people offer a few pearls of wisdom here and there, but no one really ever tells you the reality of it all and how difficult and unpredictable things can be when you have a little one.
I am always amazed at parents who seemingly parent so naturally. It’s as though nothing bothers them. They never stumble, slip, or fall. I am secretly envious of parents who have it “together”. Seriously? You don’t have moments where you feel you need to lock yourself in the bathroom and cry? Oh, wait. Did I say that out loud?
Then there are the not so serious moments of parenting slip ups. Though they may not be detrimental to my child’s well-being, they’re still the mistakes that in hindsight make you think, “Why did you possibly think that was a good idea?!”
Case in point:
Getting into the Holiday spirit, I wanted to get Little One excited about Christmas too. She loves hearing about Baby Jesus in the manger and the star of Bethlehem. She just turned 3 the other week and is more interested in that than in jolly ‘ol Saint Nick (which is totally fine with us). This said, she has expressed an interest in the festive holiday with all the music and decorations. She loves the lights and sparkly everything.
“Mama, I yuuuuv Chrimass!”
“Oh, that’s good! I’m so happy to hear you love Christmas!”
I took her to see Santa Claus at the mall and the poor kid cried bloody murder. The tears! It was heartbreaking!
“I don’t want him! I don’t want him! Mommy, I don’t like Santa!!!!”, she screamed through her tears. “I don’t want him! He’s bad! He’s a bad guy!!!!”
No photo with Santa this year, I suppose.
When I think of it, I can’t really blame her. I teach her to never go with strangers, yet I plunk her onto the lap of a strange man in a red suit with a huge beard and a bunch of elves standing beside him? Yeah. Totally unrealistic expectations. What was I thinking? Well, I guess I wasn’t thinking.
Then, I wanted to share something special from my childhood. In the weeks leading up to Christmas, it’s been a long lived tradition for me to watch all the Christmas classics on TV. This year, now that she just turned 3, I wanted to watch Frosty the Snowman, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Charlie Brown Christmas, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, etc.
I bought her a collection of Christmas classics on DVD.
“I want the reindeer one!”
When we got to the scene where Rudolph and the dentist elf meet the Abominable Snowman, Little One started screaming.
“I don’t like him! Turn it off! I’m scared! I’m scared! I don’t like monsters!!”
I tried to explain that he wasn’t really a bad monster and that in the end, he helps the elves decorate the Christmas tree. She wasn’t having any of that. To be honest, I totally forgot about the “monster” scene. Actually, I didn’t really think she’d be scared of him.
We haven’t even watched The Grinch or Frosty, and she has already decided she HATES all Christmas DVDs and will not watch them.
She is totally uninterested. What fun.