A friend of mine recently mentioned that she regretted her third child’s name. Her two older children have unique, modern names and she went with a classic for her third. It could have been the hysteria of pregnancy or maybe the panic of a third child coming, whatever the reason, looking back she wishes she had done it different. It got me to thinking about my own regrets but especially my own parenting regrets. We all have them, or at least I tell myself that so I will feel better about my own.
My regrets start at the very beginning with reading a lot about being pregnant but very little about what to do once the baby arrived. It has pretty much been a game of catch up ever since. Along the way that lack of preparation has reared its ugly head again and again. Everyone encourages you to have a birth plan and a sleeping arrangement but no one talks about a parenting personality and a community plan for your family. I had a vague idea of what I wanted to look like as a parent but once my first little boy arrived I was thrust into it and “vague” wasn’t going to cut it.
So what to do with parenting regrets. Probably the same thing we should do with all regrets; let them go! I remember listening to this speaker talk about our regrets and mistakes as rocks. Each time we hold on to them they become additional weight in our backpacks or maybe in this case our diaper bags. His idea was to lighten the load. Go through the regrets, fix what you can, let the rest go.
Isn’t the catch to fix what you can? It is a tricky bit of business, but as a friend said to me recently you have to keep trying to start over and get it right. So, I will forget all the reactionary mistakes. I will not leave these rocks in my pack. I will look ahead and begin to be a proactive parent. Oh, and I will also get all the thousands of baby pictures organized for both my children, yet another regret.
Wouldn’t it be great to have no regrets…nah! I think some of my regrets are really just learning markers and fixing them and letting them go is growth. The hope is we get to be better parents as we go. And as for my friend, she has started calling her daughter by a funky nickname…fix what you can and let it go!
See you at the Clubhouse!