Every parent starts out stating certain ultimatums that inevitably fail to hold. A few examples include:
1. I refuse to buy my child toys with annoying flashing lights and sounds.
2. I will not give my child unnecessary sugar or allow her to survive on chicken nuggets and french fries.
3. I will limit my child’s exposure to TV and I will not spend a dime on Baby Einstein or anything like it.
Have you said any of these things to yourself? I’ve said all of them to myself. And I’ve broken every single one.
I can not deny that my daughter loves toys that make noise, have bright lights, and moving parts. She loves wooden blocks too, and stuffed animals, and crayons. Still, on a long car ride, bring on the bells and whistles.
I worked myself to the point of insanity controlling my daughter’s diet up until her first birthday. I did this for good reason: a family history of food allergies. After her fateful first birthday, I relaxed and now let her eat just about everything, within reason obviously. I am proud to say she ate vegetable pasta with homemade tomato sauce for lunch today. She had chicken nuggets and french fries a few days ago.
And finally, a couple weeks ago I bought her first Baby Einstein DVD. She loves it.
Go ahead. Call me a hypocrite.
I’ve been reading articles for months about the dangers of toddlers watching too much television. The fear mongers warn of obesity and stalled cognitive development thanks to good old television and a healthy dose of absentee parenting. The general concensus of these experts: TV = fat, lazy, uncommunicative children. Then I read an article a few weeks ago, written by the mother of a three-year-old, defending the fact her child has his own television. She described the mornings when junior would wake at 5:30 or so. She would then pop in a Disney movie for him and go back to bed for another ninety minutes.
Personally, I would rather my child spend half an hour a day watching TV, and have that half an hour to get something done that really needs doing, then have my child suffer through my horrible mood because I haven’t slept, showered, eaten, or whatever else. Thirty minutes of Baby Einstein means my daughter has my full attention the rest of the time. I’m not busy obsessing about what needs to be done, because I have an outlet for it. Incidently, my daughter is not a zombie. She loves music and spends a good portion of each viewing dancing around the living room.
So, its time to write a new set of ultimatums:
I will not allow french fries to be the most common vegetable my child eats.
This is naturally impossible because potatoes are a starch.