I was reading a post by a fellow blogger about how high maintenance her child is. Now, her child is a toddler and I know that toddlers tend to be a lot more high maintenance than older kids because they’re at that stage where they’re actively trying to do stupid stuff to injure themselves while also being tiny terrorists who screech like banshees when they don’t get what they want.
And as I look back on my son’s childhood, I can honestly say he was never really that way. He’s always been very laid back and low-key, right from the beginning. Which has been very fortunate for me as his parent because it allowed me to be more laid back (well sort of.) as well.
I remember that when he was an infant, I was able to carry him from room to room in a padded Moses basket and he was perfectly content to lay there and stare at the ceiling fan or whatever while I cleaned or watched TV or did whatever. Don’t get me wrong..he got held lots. But when I got touched out, he was content to chill in his basket..until he outgrew it which didn’t take long because of his long legs. After that, I was able to lay him on the floor on a blanket with some toys or his floor gym thing and he was cool until he was wet, dirty or hungry.
Maybe I should’ve noticed then, in how laid back he was, that something was wrong. But as a first time parent who had some experience with babies but not a crap ton, I just assumed he was a laid back kid. I loved the fact that we could take him out pretty much anywhere and he’d be fine with whatever happened until he was dirty, wet or hungry. And once those needs were taken care of, he was fine playing with his fingers or toys or sucking on his pacifier. At parties and family gatherings, we passed him around like a blunt at a Grateful Dead concert and he just didn’t care whose arms he was in. He was just so CHILL.
Some people might call this lazy parenting. But I don’t think so..we played (and still do play) with him. I took him to the park, to the library for story time and other activities, we did stuff with him ALL THE TIME.
Over the years, as kids tend to do, he’s needed us less and less. He’s content to read all day or play on his tablet or watch old game shows on TV. He’s not active and sometimes I worry that we didn’t do enough. He’s never been into sports (except watching NASCAR and Cowboys football on TV with me) and I’m wondering now if I should’ve have pushed him into soccer or baseball or something like that. He used to like to run, but he was never good enough to be considered for the track team in middle school, so he quit doing it. Maybe I should’ve made keep it up. I don’t know.
I don’t know if I’m a good parent or not, to be honest. I try. And I think that’s all I can do, right?