I’m really liking Tracy Moore’s parenting posts on Jezebel. (But good god, don’t expect any kind of enlightenment in the comment threads). She’s what I would describe as ‘an accidental attachment parent’, which is pretty much how I came to be attachment parenting, too. It just happened, it felt right to me, it seemed to kinda work, and it really suited my laziness.
Here are Tracey Moore’s parenting posts:
Five: At least knowing this helps you figure out who you really want in the ol’ delivery room, eh? Let’s take that list, cut in half, and then burn whatever’s left. Hey – some people have honest-to-God orgasms when they give birth. Is that what you want your mother-in-law to see? I think you’re beginning to see that pooping is clearly the more family-friendly option here.
Perhaps, at least initially, early parenthood should be a period of confinement, I wondered. A mental and physical test of one’s ability to focus, channel and redirect. A meditative retreat into a new self, a quieting down of all the usual clatter.
Sure, we went out into the world with our baby. But rather than try to force her into our existing excursions, we tried new ones that might force us to consider the city – and our lives – from a new angle. Rather than become frustrated at staying in evenings, we relished the ability to live a low-key existence and go to sleep early, which strengthened our relationship and made working the first year entirely possible in spite of lots of waking up in the middle of the night.
Here’s something you did one time that didn’t help. When you were driving to take your baby to a broken glass factory wine-tasting party, you didn’t immediately floor it when the light changed green while sitting in traffic because you were looking at your baby in the rear-view mirror instead. Um, the lady in the Jetta was trying to get to her friend’s yoga class that already started and she only has this one free pass for this one time?
Also did you know how slow you are? Everywhere you go? Can’t you go faster? Even a little? Do you ALWAYS have to strap the baby in the car seat? Some of us are trying to get to a movie?
The ability to lie completely still for three hours, transcending all your biological needs.
This one’s not about externalizing, but internalizing. It’s great for people who are already interested in meditation. Lying next to a baby who is just almost asleep for two hours while you desperately need to pee/eat/ scratch an itch/cough brings up strange, existential questions, like, Is it possible to reabsorb all this pee and somehow be “beyond peeing?” Can you cough into yourself? Inquiring minds.
Recently I was sitting on the toilet peeing while my nearly 2-year old daughter was sitting in my lap playing with her stuffed koala bear, and I thought to myself, how did we get here? It could be worse, I suppose — we could be doing this as a performance art piece at a pop-up gallery in downtown L.A.
Not like you didn’t already have enough weird, judgy parenting shit to deal with, but yay, now it’s not just whether you nurse and whether you like it but how long you do it for — and don’t forget to feel bad about where, you human gargoyle.
Even ol’ Prudie McJudgy over at Dear Prudence, who fancies herself the most reasonable and permissive person on the planet (about porn for men), joined in on the haranguing when she had about two hemorrhages in November answering a letter about a woman who nursed her 5-year-old in, gasp, plain view of other humans.
We fought in front of the baby and didn’t always show her the makeup part.
Just ask any of my (theoretical) ex-boyfriends, I’m a BIG fan of talking about conflict right out in the open. I also think it’s OK to let kids see their parents argue, and what’s more important is showing them you can have a disagreement but that everything can be resolved. But like shaving your legs, this is still far easier said than done. Before you know it you find yourself stomping around hairy-legged one time too many over the same old row, till you notice you’ve raised your voice defending the second scratch you put on the side of the new car because there’s a weird pole next to your parking space and YES, you can try not to hit it 99% of the time but what about the 1% and what the crap can you really do if you’re in a hurry, and there is your sweet little baby hanging on your every utterance like she’s studying for the bar exam.
2012 is the year of only discussing what the baby can verbally help us resolve.