As a new mom, a lot of this parenting job is a learning curve. There's trial and error and a whole of figuring things out as you go. It is such an all-consuming job, different from anything else. It's so hard to see things when you're in the thick of it all, but parenting really is all about perspective.
My baby likes to boycott sleep. He will sleep for a few hours and then be up, ready to party. He's currently on a mission to crawl and it's all he thinks about day and night. Often at night when I lay him across me to nurse, he uses my stomach as a springboard to try to launch himself off the bed in an attempt to crawl. He is laser-focused. It's exhausting, to say the least - trying to get him to sleep and also trying to keep him safe in his endless efforts to crawl. It would be easy to complain and sometimes I do. But, I'm quickly learning that there is a silver lining.
If I look at it differently, I'm getting more cuddles right now. Something which will surely happen a little less when he's on the go all the time. His perseverance is seriously admirable. I wish I could be that laser-focused about anything. He may be strong-willed, but that will be a good thing in life. It means he won't give up when the going gets tough. It means he won't let people tell him he can't do something. I can already tell he is determined and dedicated. Those qualities will take him far in life. Of that, I am sure. Instead of getting frustrated by his strong will, I can learn something from it. I can take a page out of his book and teach myself a little perseverance and patience.
Similarly, if I support his strong will, curiosity, and determination now, who knows what he can accomplish later in life. I hope by supporting that mindset early on, it'll help his chase crazy big dreams, as he gets older. If I remember to foster that strong will, rather than try to squash it, it opens up a world of possibilities for him. I want to let him know anything is possible, if he sets his mind to it. He already has that laser-focus to achieve things; I just need to help foster it.
Every day and every stage of parenting has its issues. Once we are out of this stage, there will be something new to overcome. But, as each day passes, I'm learning to evaluate things and ask myself, "is this really as bad as it seems?" Yes, it's hard, but it's also such a short time in the grand scheme of things. I'm learning that changing my perspective is helping me deal with the hard days. It's helping me see the bigger picture. It's helping me support my kid and his crazy ambitions. Maybe it's not always easy to do, but it's worth it in the long run.
I know I'll forget sometimes. I know I'll still complain about lack of sleep. But, I will try to remember each day how quickly time passes. How a strong-willed, determined child is a good thing. How life is never boring with these endless adventures. And truly, who wants boring anyway? Maybe it's hard sometimes, but that doesn't make it any less worth it. So every day, I'll remind myself, it's all about perspective. If I change my perspective from negative to positive, I can get so much more out of everything. I can appreciate everything I'm learning and doing with my baby. I can rule the day or let the day rule me. And I plan to rule the day - right alongside my ambitious baby.