Parenting like it’s 1985

This post has been a few months in the making.  I’ve been trying to get it juuuust right.  And then I decided, screw it.  I have two toddlers and a full time job.  I don’t have time to get it just right!  Plus, my new favorite blogger at Renegade Mothering is a big fan of just writing…just getting it out.  Not worrying about perfection, being PC, or sounding ‘good’.  “Just write.” she says.  “Do it.  Do it now”.

So I am.

Anyway.

Parenting like it’s 1985.  I’ve been reading a lot of parenting things online lately, most of them found via clinking on various facebook shares.  The two topics that have struck me lately are ‘Slow parenting‘, and  the importance of self-care.  Slow parenting is this idea that we should stop hurrying our children along.  Stop scheduling so much, so that we are not always in a rush.  Take 86 minutes to walk around the block.  Spend the time to look at that caterpillar, and then dig in the dirt.  Stop saying “hurry up”, “we’ll be late” and “let’s GO!”

The importance of self-care is…well…important.  For so many reasons.

I’m trying harder to go slower.  I’m doing a good job at taking care of myself.  But, sometimes they are in direct conflict with one another.  On a weekend morning, I could color pictures and make pretend eggs in the play kitchen.  Or I could go for a run {alone}.  On Saturday, I was torn between the two.  I needed to run, to clear my head and be more ready to parent.  But I’d also spent the entire work week rushing around, and just wanted to say “YES” when Charlotte asked me to play.  I found myself debating which to do, in the middle of the living room.  “What would the article say?” I actually thought to myself.

Woah.  Hold on.  I don’t need to read something online to make every.single.decision.  In fact, I read so much online, that it actually takes up a ridiculous amount of my time.  And mothers people everywhere have been making sound decisions long before the internet and our smart phones.

So I got to thinking.

I spend a lot of time on facebook.  I click on a lot of articles that well-meaning friends share.  How to do this, Why you should do X,Y,Z with your kids, What your 2-year old should know and be doing.  Honestly, you can find any type of ‘research’ to back up any parenting decision you want (or don’t want) to make.  We’re living in this crazy digital culture that makes us over-analyze and over-research.  So I decided to take a break.  I’m going back to parenting like it’s 1985.  That is, before the internet.

Why?

1) I know my kids, and I know my own and Fred’s values and our wishes for them.  I think we can figure out how, why, and what issues to parent.  My kids are pretty awesome, and I am damn near obsessed with them.  So why not just go with our gut?

2) Without facebook time, I’ll have time for things I always say I don’t have time for!  Like: writing!  Stretching after a run.  Making real-life phone calls to friends.  Reading an actual book.  Making those curtains for the playroom that I’ve been thinking about.

(Disclaimer: I will not quit my boobie group.  You guys are my rock.  My peeps.  I NEED you.)

So, farewell to the land of ‘likes’ and ‘shares’ of this article and that study, the cute pictures of other peoples’ babies (gasp!) …along with pictures of Friday night drinks, the view from a vacation balcony, and a Wednesday morning latte. It’s not you, it’s me.  I got some things I gotta do.  If you’re curious what they are, you can find out about it here.  We’ll be busy, but doing it all slowly (of course).

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3 thoughts on “Parenting like it’s 1985

  1. Love these thoughts Betsy! Today, I thought my phone was broken. I thought I was going to go through major withdrawals, since I usually check it at prep and lunch. But to be honest, it was so nice being disconnected. I’m seriously considering going to an old school “dumb phone.”

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