Parenting: Mothering Like a Dad

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READING TIME: 3 min.

At our house, Daddy is the favorite. Mom is best when it comes to boo-boos, but in most other circumstances, Daddy is king. This can be attributed to many, many variables, but recently I realized a big reason is that Daddy is the “yes” to my “no”.

july wrestlingSome sort of wrestling the monster game.

“Play trucks me.”
“Carter I need to load the dishwasher real quick while your sister is content.”
Vs.
“You got it buddy. Which truck is mine?”

“I play outside.”
“No, honey, not right now, it’s too hot.”
Vs.
“Ok, son, let me change my clothes. Go get your ball!”

july baseballYou can tell by the reflection of the blinds in the window that I am inside where it is cool and mosquito free!

I’m not completely beating myself up, I know that part of my mom responsibilities (in our household) include taking care of housework, meals, etc., and I do have a 3 month old to balance in there, whereas Dad doesn’t. He helps with housework and he loves to watch baby girl, but he can’t nurse her, so rarely is he alone with both for long (and honestly I love for him to watch little man while I do my thing in the kitchen or laundry room…)

BUT. I have vowed to say “no” less and say “yes” more. Since I do have an infant and since I don’t want to create a monster I won’t be saying yes always, but I have been making a concerted effort to say yes even when I want otherwise. I’m also trying to do activities especially geared toward him.

The other day I was looking at Instagram and I chuckled at a friend’s son who was “helping” her bake (thinking, “What a mess! She’s so brave!”). Little man heard my laugh and asked to see, and his comment was, “Chocolate! Yum. Mom I make chocolate.” My first inclination was no… Not letting this kiddo in MY kitchen. But instead I said, “Ok buddy, let’s go see what we can make!” Sure enough, I had all the ingredients for chocolate cupcakes and an hour later we were pulling them out of the oven! Was it messier? Yes. Did it take longer? Yes. Did it stress me out that he kept spilling chocolate chips everywhere (and eating them)? Yes. Was it worth it? Definitely. He loved it, told Daddy all about it, loved eating his creation, and I loved seeing the sparkle in his eyes.

july baking

So proud. 

Since having this moment of clarity, we have spent more than a few quarters on those automated rides, had a squirt gun fight in the kitchen, gone to the drive-in, the Frontiers of Flight museum, gotten donuts just because, done messy crafts, and more.

july hose

Despite the heat we went outside and he LOVED playing with the hose!

It’s been said by many people many times, but I’m having to learn the hard way and figure it out myself… He won’t remember if the kitchen was always mopped or if his playroom was pinterestedly organized, but he will remember that mom learned how to pitch, created the best Lego cities, took him to the splash park, and always let him lick the spatula. So I’m learning to let it go. And honestly, saying yes is a lot more fun for me too!

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