I read such an interesting article last week. To summarise, the author speaks about how we are spoiling our children in today’s modern society, and that everything we do for them is to ensure that every part of their lives is magical. I happen agree with her sentiment, she goes on to reminisce about her own childhood… how gifts were only given at Christmas and on birthdays, playtime did not mean mom and dad being involved at every point and special treats were just that, special and rare.
Parenting is exhausting and in-between trying to keep everyone alive, fed and healthy, there’s an added pressure to almost outdo other parents. Kids parties are flamboyant affairs, and every interaction is documented on Instagram, Pinterest and Facebook.
I can’t say I’m 100% innocent though, I’m currently planning my son’s first birthday party, and am knee deep in boards, budget and baking. As much as I realise that the celebration is more about us as parents and the ‘look at the small human we’ve kept going this long’ and less about our almost 12-month-old who couldn’t care less about the life size barn mock-up I’m painting, it’s still so hard to check myself and go from overboard must-craft-everything-mom to the chilled good-there’s-cake-and-kids-are-happy-mom.
So where do we draw that line? For me, I’m going to try and curb my enthusiasm for at least 330 days of the year and remind my son that not everything has to be a Hallmark moment. I want him to feel comfortable and independent enough to play with a toy that’s not brand new, to run around outside without expecting me to craft a Google-searched obstacle course along the way, and to eat vegetables that aren’t cut out into teeny tiny dragons and Princes.
Cynical? Maybe. Saving time? You bet!
By Kate Kearney