Zayd is finally at an age where I feel like all of those parenting books I spent reading while I was pregnant or he was just a tiny thing are coming in to play and its wonderful.
- When I am trying to explain the behavior I want, I can definitely see a difference if I get down on his level. Its much easier for him to ignore me if I am some big tall mommy monster. And if I squat down, he usually crawls in my lap so whatever he was attempting to destroy is safe again. We have moments there both of us on the floor.
- Getting him to help is key for this kid. He holds his buckle on his carseat now while I try and hook it. (After screaming at me about being strapped in, but hey, baby steps.) The other day at the grocery store I promised him that if he stayed in the cart the whole time I would let him run around outside before we headed home. After loading up the trunk, it was time to push the cart back. I popped him down and let him *push* it into the cart corral. I was doing the heavy lifting and he was safe between me and the cart but he was SO PROUD when we got to the corral. You should have seen his beaming face and the ridiculous amount of clapping we did for him. (And, as a matter of fact, the lady parked next to the corral rolled down her window and applauded him as well.)
- Sometimes I get frustrated because he doesn't want to stay in his stroller and would rather be pressed to me in a wrap or sling. And then I remember that I babywear because I read and I believe that its good for him. Especially as a teeny tiny lentil, he definitely benefitted from having my heart beat right next to his little cheek. So, now he likes to be worn. And I like to wear him. And really, its way better than the stupid stroller anyways! (As long as we aren't running. Haven't figured out a babywearing/running mechanism.)
- I get to let him pick things now and it is awesome. "Bulbul ka bacha" or "Noisy Baby Book"? Apple or Banana? Blocks or Balls? He actually picks. Its so mature and I like being able to communicate with him even though he knows very few words.
I feel like I am finally parenting and not just keeping him alive. It is scary but awesome. I love watching him learn to behave a little more maturely, or pick up a new skill, or be proud of himself. There is probably nothing I have ever loved more in my entire life than seeing him be proud of himself. We do a LOT of Zayd-inspired celebratory clapping in the Mammen house.
There was a positive parenting workshop this week that I missed but some friends of mine went and took notes. I am really excited to attend a four week workshop on the topic during the summer. I love the idea that there is a science to parenting. (Just need to be sure to keep myself away from solidly defining a *right* way to parent and then beating myself up for not measuring up...its maybe a tendency of mine.) Any parenting advice from the readers out there?
P.S. Did I mention he is destructive?