Can you remember, way back when, you were a mere whipper snapper, and some of the strange things your parents used to say to you? You would think ”Nah, they are making that up, that can’t be true…but I’d better do it, just in case, you never know.” Now you hear yourself saying, those very same things, to your own children. You have no idea if these myths, or tall tales are true, but you find they somehow add order, and the rhythm of history to your parenting.
If you don’t know what I mean, this is a great video illustration from CANparent, a new Government (DfE) initiative :
You can remember them now can’t you?
Well here are some of my favourites :
My Mum said it to me, and I have said it to my two girls. I know it’s not true I really do, but I find myself repeating it, even adding my own strand to the phrase ‘…it will make your hair curl and your Mummy smile’ Miss A (4) actually does have very curly hair, and now she retorts. ‘but Mummy I don’t want to have curly hair any more, and you are always smiling!’
Or how about this one:
I remember this one too, as one my Mum and Dad would say to me often, and well perhaps there is a little bit of truth in this one. I found out only recently that if you have an upset stomach you can eat very thin slices of apples, and it neutralises any acid, and settles the stomach. So even though, an apple would not cure-all ills, it definitely has health benefits.
My favourite though is :
As a new parent, there is so much conflicting advice to do with sleep.
‘Don’t let your baby sleep too long, except when they’ve been napping too much, then you should wake them’
‘Never wake a sleeping baby’
‘Don’t let them nap after 5 p.m’
‘Sleep begets sleep, so try to get your child to sleep as much as possible’
‘Put the baby to bed awake but drowsy’
‘Don’t wake the baby if it fell asleep while nursing’
‘Never let a baby fall asleep whilst feeding’
I remember this confusion over sleep, so vividly. Why would I need to wake my baby, and why is it so wrong?
Not long after the birth though, and when we starting to get into a routine, I realised that by not waking a sleeping baby I would end up with a very nocturnal life. That the sleep routines made, become life savers too. Whether you do manage to get 40 winks at the same time as them, or use it as a chance to quickly eat, shower…even get dressed.
Being a parent is fun, fulfilling, scary, life changing but boy all this advice is exhausting!