10 Of My Best Parenting Decisions

Being a Mum can be such a rollercoaster of emotions. It can be lonely, for one. The house will be chaotic, there will be a never ending list of jobs that you have to get done. The washing is never ending. The children are noisy, and never seem to stop and slow down. Despite all of that, loneliness can echo throughout your life. It can engulf you.

Facebook does no favours in a way. As you scroll through the news feed, seeing "Kaitlin tagged herself at soft play with 7 other Mums".... "Robert had an amazing night out with the lads." It seems like everyone is out doing something. ALL. OF. THE. TIME. Or someone puts up a photo of their baby and gets a ton of attention and likes.

Yet here you are, having a toy Monkey thrown at your head whilst scrubbing wee off of the carpet. It can be lonely. It can be confusing and overwhelming. It can be ridiculously hard work. 

Being a Mum can be exhausting, half of the time your head is all over the place and you have lost which day you are on. You forget things and appear frazzled, but it is OK, because you can blame this on 'Baby Brain', no matter how old your baby is! I often question my decisions and choices in life. I, do however, make some good decisions. Here are some of the best listed below; 

1. Mummysocial and Netmums. It is such a great way of getting to know other Mums, in either a pen pal way or to arrange a play date with. I found some ways to meet people and have someone to rant to about toddler poop and sleepless nights, this has made motherhood so much easier and lighter.

2. Calpol Plug In. This amazing product has been a life saver whenever the boys or myself have caught colds. It releases vapours for 8 hours through the night, meaning we can breathe easy and get some sleep. This is an essential in our household. 

3. Keeping Old Clothes. After my first baby, I decided not to throw away the clothes and to instead pop them in some vacuum storage bags and into the loft. When I found out I was having a second boy, it was a relief to know that I barely had any clothes or toys or anything really to buy. Most of their clothes gets fairly worn and ruined now so I don't save as much but there is still hand me downs, which saves me a lot of money. 

4. Ignoring the Internet. Sometimes the boys come down quite poorly, or they have a problem that I worry about. So I turn to Google and end up scrolling through endless web pages and forums. What I find is never really helpful and sends me into an even worst state of worry. I've learnt to now ignore the internet and to not Google for health advice. 

5. Listening to the Internet's Advice. Sometimes though, the internet can be the most helpful thing. I have, on several occasions, had to turn to the big worldwide web to discover answers to my problems. Like when, for instance, my then 18 month old shoved 6 DVD's into the Playstation in one go. After reading a little, and watching a YouTube video on how to fix this problem- I managed it- before the husband had even come home from work. Therefore, I saved the day. 

6. Reading Reviews Online. So many times the boys have begged for certain toys, or there will be huge crazes of toys amongst my Son's year group. I tend to do a little research and read reviews on the toys to figure out if the huge price tag on them is worth it, or we avoid it, ride out the craze and resist buying. I made the mistake of buying a Tommee Tippee steriliser before my eldest was born. It broke within 3 days, I then looked on Amazon at the reviews to find a ton of similar problems others had with the same product. I have learnt my lesson now and always review the big things. 

7. Following Your Gut Instinct. There is nothing a Mother should follow more than their own gut instinct. It is the best thing to listen to 100% of the time. Whether it has been when one of the boys have been poorly and I've listened to the gut and chased up the Drs, or when I decide against a parenting decision and it has worked out for the best for my children. I have both given and received a lot of parenting advice, but the best one has to be to follow your gut instinct, as you know your child better than anyone else. Children are so individual too, so one piece of advice does not necessarily work with every child.  

8. Not Doing Cry It Out. I know for some Mother's this parenting method for soothing their children has worked wonders, however after trying it for approximately 0.3 seconds myself, I decided that this was against what I wanted to do. My boys still come into our room in the middle of the night, but I know soon the day this happens will cease and I will miss it. They grow far too quickly so I am happy for them to go at their pace. This doesn't mean I am against the method, it means I am happy with the decision I chose for my family. 

9. Having 2, (So far). I never wanted my eldest to be an only child. The thought of him playing alone saddened me and I just knew that I wanted to provide him with a buddy for life. So asides from the greatest decision of all to become a parent, since then it has been to be a parent of 2. The bond between them fills me with such pride and I am so overjoyed that they truly are the best of friends. 

10. Saving For Their Future. A couple of months after the boys were born, we decided to open up a bank account for them both. We don't manage to put too much into the accounts each month, but as they say, every little does help. So, I can be rest assured that once they hit 18, they will have enough money saved in their banks to start them off with some sort of future. 

So, despite parenting being this confusing, exhausting, hard and ever-changing journey, there are times when the decisions you make as a Mother, as parents and as a family really do help you out. From the small decisions to the bigger ones that shape your future journey as a family. 

Making decisions as a parent can be so overwhelming and scary, most of the time I don't feel like I get anything right. I think it's important to look back and acknowledge the times that we feel we did actually get it for once, when most of the time we are just winging it. The rest of the time I feel like I get it spectacularly wrong, like allowing my boys to eat Skittles when we are all tired and winding down for the day, but not allowing myself to get as high on sugar as they are. Some times, though, like the above times, I do feel a little proud of myself- even for the smallest of achievements. 

What's the best parenting decision you have made? 

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