Why I Didn't Do This With My Last Kid

I've been a mom since I was sixteen. I have been a primary female figure in my step-son's life since then. We have been guiding forces in each other's lives since before his second birthday.
Growing As A Parent

Seven years and two more kids later, and I'm stunned that people (my husband even) are surprised that I'm not the same parent I once was.

My husband has said, "Well we didn't do that with this kid" or "No, we always made this kid do this."

My friends have said, "Why did you do that stuff with your last kid?"  (By "that stuff" they, of course, mean baby wearing, baby led weaning, and displays of breastfeeding pride.)

I, by no means, am a perfect parent.  Honestly, such a thing doesn't exist.  However, I do try to always be a better parent than I was the day before.  Every day presents us with new opportunities.  New choices.  Each new day provides us the opportunity to improve ourselves.

Being the best parent I can be is important to me.  Sometimes, oftentimes, there's a struggle between the parent I once was or that I am and the parent I want to be.

Quite simply, the reason I didn't do some of the things I'm doing now with my two boys is because I didn't know about them.  I had no idea about baby wearing or baby led weaning before I had Luna.

I did breastfeed Gabriel for his first few months, but then I exclusively pumped until he was 1 year old (another taboo parenting choice of mine).  Cloth diapers?  Ha!  I would have thought you meant safety pinned cloth, not modern day cloth.

Not only do our children grow, but we grow as parents, too!  It's okay to learn new things, to be better, to do things different, to change.  Each child we have and every child is unique.  It's crazy to think that two different children, even with the same parents, should have the exact same experiences as each other.

Every child deserves an individualized response.  Every child deserves a parent who wants to be the best they can be; a parent who is willing to learn, grow, and be better.

Did you do things differently after your first child?  How has your parenting style or choices changed as your child or children have grown?

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