There are many routes to successful parenting. Here’s how one mom found hers:
Janet – first let me thank you for all that you do. I always envisioned the kind of connection I wanted to have with my baby, and your posts have helped make that dream a reality. In the spirit of new beginnings for the new year, I would love to share my joy:
I used to think my 4 month old son was high maintenance. But I was the high maintenance one. I love him beyond measure, but he cried all the time. He was rarely happy. I felt like a failure and I could feel our relationship strained. I felt everything I read or heard about living with babies was wrong — all the swinging, rocking, wearing, slinging, shushing, swaddling, pacifying. The most chaotic experiment was scheduling, baby whisperer style: making him nap, making him eat, making him play. Honestly, I would cry all day too if someone dictated how I spent every minute of my life!
Somehow I came across your page, and a ripple of “AHA” moments cascaded over me. It has taken about one week but I am blown away by the difference Magda Gerber’s RIE philosophy has made in my life and my baby’s. My favorite thing about RIE is that it shows you how to coexist with your child, to live peacefully with this new person who has his own emotions, wants and needs.
I now recognize my son’s flow and respect it. He has shown me who he is as an individual, and I delight in his presence. Our days are now filled with peace. He sleeps when he’s tired, eats when he’s hungry, explores when curious, daydreams when relaxing, cries only when he feels the need. In general he is laid back and content. It’s a beautiful thing to behold. I am now looking forward to a wonderful year getting to know this amazing person! Thank you and Happy New Year!
When I asked Stacey if I could share her story she responded:
By all means post away! I hope other parents will want to share their celebrations as well. I think it’s a shame that we live in a society where we can’t express when we feel authentically pleased with our work as parents — not bragging out of insecurity but just genuinely satisfied. RIE has helped me to see that I’m a great mom and at the same time remain humble. To have balance is an amazing gift. The challenges of parenting will always be there. We should take time out to celebrate the good stuff before we dive back into the thick of it all. It is a messy and invigorating business.
I couldn’t agree more!
(Thank you for your note and delightful photo, Stacey!)
To learn more about RIE (Magda Gerber‘s life-changing child care approach), I recommend her books:Dear Parent: Caring for Infants With Respect and Your Self-Confident Baby… and also my book: Elevating Child Care: A Guide to Respectful Parenting