Are You Ready to Have Children?
Are you Emotionally and Financially Ready?
Before your decide to bring another person into this world, make sure that you are emotionally and financially ready. Be certain that you can put aside your childish needs and desires. A child will forever change your life, and their quality of life depends on how well adjusted you are in your own life. Too many people bring babies into the world without first making sure that they can put their child’s needs before their own. They are not pets, you will not be able to house train them, make them totally independent, and continue to live the style of life you enjoyed pre-child without seriously messing up the little masterpiece you created. Therapy is expensive and unnecessary if you take care in being the best mother or father you can be. Is your relationship strong? Have you talked about how you will raise your child? Do your belief systems match? Do you have the same goals? What are the plans for discipline, holidays, and traditions? Communicate with your partner, talk about everything before you start to try to conceive (it is a preferred method to get all the kinks worked out before you get married, but definitely before you have a child). It is impossible to plan how you will handle situations that you have no idea will someday come up, but a couple can be like minded on the important general points. “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” (Benjamin Franklin).
In the Safety of the Womb
It starts in the womb, Some people name their babies, sight un-seen. If you name your baby, call them by name. Some people need to see what their baby will look like before they can think of a proper name. Talk to your baby, tell the precious one that you love them. Sing to your baby, and play music with a portable player. Lay it in top of your tummy, and let the baby feel the vibration from the music.
After the baby is born, talk to the little one. Show them respect, always tell him/her what you are doing. I am going to pick you up now, and change your diaper. I am going to get you a bottle, are you a hungry baby? They will understand a lot more then they will be able to convey. Research shows that mom’s and dad’s who spend a lot of time talking to their babies bond better and translate to their baby attention, affection, and they are typically faster talkers than parents who did not have as much verbal communication with their children. By showing your baby respect in early infancy you will be teaching early boundaries, and they will come to know what to expect, and they will know that they can trust. Your baby will be a happier, and better adjusted child.
“The first is love; your love for your children should be unconditional and shown to them every day. Praise them every time you can. If they bring home a paper from school that they colored, and it is all scribbles, let them know that it is the most beautiful picture in the world! Not only tell them, but show them, too, by hanging it up somewhere important. Anytime your child comes to you with a kiss or hug, always take the time to give one back. When you take the time to give love to your children, that is how you teach them to love” (Nofsinger, 2012, p.1)!
What tools will they have in their tool box?
Love them, they will only be the age they are for a minute. You will blink and a year or two will slip away without any hesitation. Time knows no bounds, it ticks by in an unmerciful fashion when you are waiting for something or completing a task that is poorly regarded. It is fleeing and unwarranted when you are enjoying something and want it to last. You get caught up on the daily grind of life and so much precious time is wasted on the things you will later figure out aren’t as important as your children. When they are really little and unable, do for them. Nurture them, and care for them, but realize that children quickly become capable of doing a lot more than some parents understand is possible. Children will often rise to the occasion, expect a little more then what they demonstrate. Challenge them, children excel in environments where they are challenged just enough. You never want to be critical, or set your children up for failure. Your job is to help build their life’s tool box: their coping skills, their knowledge, and their experiences.
Have fun at bath time, you can use bath toys, or typical household items. Try to race your child's boat, and let them win. It is fun to hear them squeal
Bedtime is a special Time. Make-up a story, or tell them one from memory, and do the voices. Turn the lights down low or get a flash light. Just do not make it scary. Favorite stories are Goldilocks and the Three Bears, Rapunzel, Cinderella, Snow White, and Rumpelstiltskin.
You can have fun during car rides. Try to find different objects on the road, a unique version of car bingo, make up a story and pass the story on to the next rider to finish; children love to pretend and making up a story is a perfect way to do that. You can also call out words and see if the children can find a rhyming word.
Make a dinner connection. You can ask for your child(rens) help in planning dinner, make it a game: What shall we have tonight, take them to the store and have them help you find the needed ingredients. You can teach your children how to measure, have them help you prepare in some way so they can feel a part of the process that is a very important part of their routine. Have the child(ren) set the table, serve, or clear.
Teach a man to fish...
When they get older do not suffocate them, people need to breathe. Do not hover and solve all their problems for them, help them learn critical thinking. Teach them how to problem solve. Provide opportunities for your child to learn responsibility, but do not make them your slave. You’re the mommy, or daddy, if you have other children it’s your job to raise them and take care of them, not your child’s. It’s your job to take care of your child’s needs, not the other way around. They were not put on earth to listen to or solve your problems, you are suppose to listen to them, and provide choices for your child to solve their own problems. “ Give a man a fish, and he will eat for a day, teach him how to fish and you will feed him for life”(Unknown).
You can give them age appropriate chores, whether you decide to pay them allowance or not makes no difference. There are experts in both camps. Whatever you and your spouse decides regarding that will work out, but be consistent. Take opportunities to have fun with them, listen to them, laugh with them. Teach them respect by showing respect. Teach them love, self control, kindness, gentleness, and compassion by modeling all the qualities you want your child have. You are their first teacher. Take your job seriously, but find time to laugh and enjoy all that children are and can bring to your life. There is nothing more difficult and challenging, that is paralleled with immense pride and joy, but that of parenting. One last thing, when your child brings you a problem-no matter how small you think it is, it is relevant to size-it is huge to them.
"Responsibility; there are many ways to teach your children responsibility. For younger children, you can start by having them help you pick up their toys. For older children, they can have chores of cleaning their room weekly, or feeding a pet every day. And when the chores are done, always make sure to praise them for doing a good job, and say, "Thank you". When you teach a child responsibility, he or she will learn to be responsible in his or her life, and will be a responsible person in the working field someday" (Nofsinger, 2012, p.1).
Nofsinger, T. (2012). How to Raise Well-Adjusted Kids. Retrieved May 2, 2012 from http://www.howtodothings.com/family-relationships/how-to-raise-well-adjusted-kids
Warner, P. (2012). Strategies to make Anytime With Your Child Quality Time. Retrieved May 2, 2012 from http://family.go.com/parenting/article-mm-62814-strategies-to-make-anytime-with-your-child-quality-time-t/
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