I’m about to share one of those really boring parenting moments nobody else cares about, but bear with me. This week I managed to cut all of Little B’s finger and toe nails in one go in under two minutes, with no chasing, twisting or squirming involved. A banal moment of motherhood yes, but it was also a milestone moment.
It was the first time he’s ever sat still and let me get on with it, without squealing, clenching or making it as long and drawn out a process as it possibly could be. It was one of those breakthrough parenting moments in which you know from now on life is going to be that little bit easier.
When you think about it there are actually a lot of breakthrough moments, especially in that first year. From sleeping through the night to actually eating a meal you’ve made for them, mini achievements range from the minor to the major.
Here’s my list of 10 breakthrough parenting moments:
1. The first smile. This usually happens around the time the adrenaline from the birth has worn off and the babymoon is well and truly over. Your other half is back at work, the visitors have come and gone and you’ve unwittingly become locked in a cycle of feeding, washing, cleaning and wiping on the least sleep you’ve ever had with only cold tea and half-eaten meals to keep you going. Then one day, when you’re least expecting it, your little scrap of a thing who until now has only stared vaguely past your ear will suddenly look you in the eye and a smile will spread across their little face, lighting them up from inside and giving you a glimpse of the little person they’ll become.
2. The first time they sleep through the night. Or most of the night, anyway. You’ll wake up and realise you’ve been asleep for five hours straight, and you’ll feel like a whole new person – the person you used to feel like. With the fug of new motherhood temporarily lifted it feels like anything is possible, even if that night is then followed by three terrible ones. That one good night is enough to keep you going and give you a glimmer of hope that it won’t always be like this.
3. The day you pack away the high chair. I know you shouldn’t wish away the baby years, and one day I’ll probably look back and wish mine were small enough to be in high chairs again, but God I hate them. All that wiping over and over and over again, day in and day out. The day you pack away the high chair and they graduate to a big chair is definitely a break through moment in the monotony of parenthood stakes.
4. The day they let you cut their nails without a fuss. As previously mentioned, nail cutting can be a long and drawn out process requiring strength, determination and perseverance until they realise that it will all be over a lot quicker if they just sit still.
5. The first time they eat a whole meal you made for them from scratch. It makes all those miniature pies that end up abandoned at the back of the freezer and all those lovingly created sauces you end up scraping from the dining room floor worth it.
6. The day you ditch the nappies. The funny thing is I can’t actually remember the very last nappy BB wore, but I do remember feeling a sense of freedom and release that nappy buying and changing was no longer part of our routine. And the nappymoon lasted a good few months.
7. The first time you leave the house without everything but the kitchen sink. For me this happened in the small window of time after BB was toilet trained and before Little B was born. All we really needed was a pack of wipes and spare pair of pants (for her, not me) just in case.
8. You master the art of poppers and dungaree clasps. Annoyingly this happens just when they’re growing out of babygros and dungarees.
9. You finally get the knack of getting baby wipes out of the packet one handed without ripping them. This might be a small victory, but it’s a satisfying one.
10. When you can go out for the evening without having to worry. Whether it’s an evening out with friends or date night, it’s like a great weight has been lifted off your shoulders when you know they’ll be just fine.
Today is the LAST day for nominations for this year’s MAD Blog Awards. Please consider nominating me! The categories I best fit into are Best Pre-school Blog, Best Writer or (dare I say it) even Blog of the Year – all you have to do is click on the badge below and enter https://crummymummy.co.uk into the relevant box. Thank you SO SO much in advance! x
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