Since hubby and I are both first-time parents, we were invited for a parenting session which was held at National Childcare Center in Mahe. Our speaker was from International School, a parent and a teacher herself. We started the session with a question, "where did you learn to be a parent?" and most of us agreed that we learned through intuition, imitation and by far an example from our parents as well.
Media was also one of the considerable factors with which we took time to discuss the pros and cons. Hubby and I were into different groups to share experiences with the other parents and learn from them as well. Such a good way to interact with each other knowing how vital it was to hear life-changing stories from different parents with different perspectives and strategies on how to bring up a good child in society.
Four main categories were emphasized and our speaker mentioned that we could be both either on becoming authoritative or democratic.
Authoritative by definition entails being in authority and as a child, you have to abide by the set rules.
For example: living under your parents' roof means sharing responsibilities at home and doing household chores. Obey as what your parents would tell you to do, where mostly fathers agreed that it's their style.
however the consensus for democratic style voiced out by us mothers that there must be mutual respect between the parent and the child. I'm personally into democratic while hubby is into authoritative, so we sort of balance Sage's behaviour at home should there were instances when he's showing normal hyperactive behaviour and CONSEQUENCES of his actions are tantamount to LEARNING and never a punishment.
The session was productively helping hubby and me to acknowledge in general, wherein children need to learn that the world at large is full of consequences, natural or logical as occurrence.
Like one time, while I was baking my baby's favourite banana cake, at his age since he's very much inquisitive, I mentioned to him that the oven was hot. Not unless he touched the pan that he knew what "hot" really meant. From then on, whenever he saw me baking, he would say, "mommy hot?" meaning he can't touch it while baking or else he will get himself burn. Learning from natural consequences led our baby into more cautious the next time and eventually knew hot and also cold.
Many parents believe that good parents are those that are responsible for their children. Isn't it what parenting is all about right? This has been encouraged by our society likewise taking risks and accepting success is part of growing up. As a first-time mom, there were instances I felt guilty when I am not available for my baby 24/7 especially the first three months. The exhaustion I felt, deprived of sleep, and also eating habit needless to say the ROUTINE which I tried to practice for Sage was overwhelming.
Rules or Routines?
As our baby is growing, setting up his routine was very crucial for his daily activities likewise, Sage's always looking forward to it. The first three months was easy to put up with however later did I realize that as he's also taking another milestone, setting up his routine has to change a bit knowing that putting him for an afternoon nap was not anymore the same like he had been as the first three months, likewise his bedtime routine which would momentarily mean that at least at 8 pm lights are off and no more baby train game. Rules are there to remind him that there were things he can't and can do yet Routines are more beneficial for his learning curve.
Remember Matthew Jacobson inspirational quote on parenting,
"Behind every young child who believes in himself is a parent who believed first"
This I can fully attest to because Sage during his assessment before his second year birthday has surpassed my expectations when at first he's hesitant to interact with the attending nurse who showed him those things he already knew, yet since he's not used to her presence, he's a bit reserved at first.
So I have to remind him, it's okay and he can identify those objects. He simply just waited for my go signal and got his confidence back to interact with the nurse whom he felt a stranger at first. He looked at me and I smiled back, gave him a nod. Lo and behold, he eventually enjoyed the game in the end and the nurse said he's pretty much advanced for his age.
What's the Rationale?
Parenting is a gift, it is not just a responsibility. One thing that was clear to me when I knew that I would be a mom, was the main thought of having a child in my womb wherein at my age, people considered it not anymore ideal. I have learned so many things during my pregnancy about how amazing to become a mother, a responsibility accompanied by greater adventure together with your baby. Not everyone is given a chance to be a mother, but once you have already become one, NURTURE your child in a good way.
How you raised them at an early age will eventually be their training ground on how to become an adult one day. You are not just raising a child but a human being with whom you are responsible for his or her future.
There is so much to learn from our babies as much as they have learned from us and from their stimulus, so be keen with your interaction with them. Proper use of words is so essential from the moment they could already adapt to their environment. A babies' brain is like a Tabula rasa or a "blank slate", a theory that individuals are born without built-in mental content, and therefore all knowledge comes from experience or perception.
images used this post are mine edited via Canva