Perfect parenting: Expectation versus reality

Amid all of the wonderful parenting moments, like watching with pride as my toddler Isaiah mastered going down the slide on his own, there are some pretty wacky ones too. Then there are those days where I have this picture perfect vision of how things are going to play out only to find that the reality ends up being quite different. 

The besties meet the baby

Expectation: Having enough time to whip up a homemade treat before greeting my friend at the door with a smile and my handsome newborn swaddled in my arms.

Reality: When my friend Niki let me know that she was on her way, Isaiah was a perfectly cared for napping bundle, but I was a hot mess. His non-stop newborn needs had not left time for me to shower. Not only did I not have anything whipped up for Niki, I had not even had time to eat anything myself, and it was late afternoon. Niki did what a great friend does and brought me my fave fast food, listened to my new mama woes and marveled at my little guy.

Takeaway: My expectations of myself were way off. When my friend Jess stopped over to meet Isaiah, I smartened up and asked her if she would hold my newborn while I showered. 

The wedding reception

Expectation: Taking a 16-month-old to a wedding reception might present some challenges, but with my parents along surely it wouldn’t be too bad.

Reality: I must have felt reality creeping in with this one as we headed out the door, because I made a last minute shoe change from heels to flats. The delectable wedding feast was a relay race where my husband would eat a bit while I chased our son and then we would switch. If we dared try to make Isaiah sit and eat in his high chair, he would protest loudly during the speeches. This was also the night our son had officially become faster than grandma and grandpa. My husband and I could barely keep up with him as he happily darted to dive headfirst down the stairs!

Takeaway: Find a babysitter for the next wedding reception. 

The play date

Expectation: I’d stroll into the park in a flowing maxi dress with Isaiah, who would also be wearing a stylin’ outfit, and nonchalantly hand my friend a refreshing iced coffee.

Reality: I got my toddler ready and successfully found adorable frog socks that coordinated well with his green outfit. By the time it was my turn to get ready, I realized that my maxi dresses were all dirty, so I opted for the jeans and gym shoes momiform. My only clean socks were actually Christmas socks; did I mention it was August? Meanwhile, my toddler somehow got a hold of my husband’s comb, and I watched in horror as he happily shoved it into the vent of our air purifier. I hustled out of the house and was glad that I was on time and had remembered to grab the iced coffee. As I juggled my son and the coffee tumbler, his little hands locked on to the to go cup lid and then he slobbered all over it! I knew that I would not be handing my friend the coffee after all, but at least I was on time, right? 

Takeaway: Next time, just go straight for the momiform. After all, maxi dresses aren’t the best for chasing a toddler on playground equipment.

When has your parenting vision been way off from reality? What was your takeaway? Chime in! I would love to hear from you. 

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