Parents come in so many variations. We all spend our lives watching and learning from our own parents, wanting to take note of the good things and adjust some things we don’t like to raise our own children. Becoming a parent was a surprise to me! I was introduced to my stepson when he was 3. He is 7 now, and such a lovely child to have in my life. I have learned so much from him. It is a special gift to be a part of a child's life, and watch them grow, talk and learn to walk on their own. To merge into an existing family, and learn how you can be helpful and expand this being's horizon.
No one really knows how to be a parent, but from my own experiences and also from chatting with friends who have children, we all have to learn how to be flexible, bendable, and bring balance to a joyful situation. Grow as they grow and be willing to learn to communicate with love and kindness.
Here are a collection of thoughts from friends and myself who are parents.
Here are my thoughts on Parents To-Be:
Trust yourself. It seems no matter what stage we come into a child’s life, we all have to learn to trust ourselves and instinctually have those eyes in the back of our head. If you need a little help, try our gentle flower essence blend: Parent-to-be Flower Essence. Created to gently guide you into Parenthood.
Sleep schedule. Setting a sleep schedule so that you can rest in shifts is super helpful for those beginning months with your newborn. My brother and his wife did this, and it seemed to provide them both with a support system so they both could get sleep regularly. I don’t know about you, but I am definitely a crabby bear when I don’t get enough sleep! Our Zen Parent Tea and Glycerite can be just the aid to take the edge off.
Be flexible with your ideals. This might be the biggest challenge I face as a stepparent. I find myself thinking "If I have given birth to this child, then I would have done it this way…" I find myself needing to check myself and practice being more open-minded. Learning to be flexible with my ideals on how a child should be raised is a constant growing process for me. I don’t know about you, but I often hear my parents and grandparents in my head saying, "Back in my day it was done like this…" Parents, myself included, can benefit from being flexible with deciding how to raise their children.
Ask for help and be willing to accept help when being offered. It is overwhelming when so many folks want to jump in to help out. One thing that was passed on to me for organizing a new parent's to-do list, is to have a friend organize a meal train, grab supplies and groceries, or organize naps for the parents to get a break. Goes back to rest and sleep being necessary to cultivate joy!
Be gentle with yourself. Remember you don’t know it all and you never will, and that's not a bad thing. Be gentle with yourself as you learn and grow alongside your child.
Send your partner praises. In all phases of life, give your partner the praises to let them know they are doing a great job! Just like with your child, you are learning to communicate in a new language.
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