Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Natural Parenting Carnival post: My parenting resolutions

Welcome to the January Carnival of Natural Parenting: Parenting resolutions!

This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama. This month we're writing about how we want to parent differently — or the same — in the New Year. Please read to the end to find a list of links to the other carnival participants.


This is my very first time joining in a blogging carnival. When I heard about Hobo Mama’s idea of starting a carnival about natural parenting I thought it fit right in with what I’m already doing in my daily life and blogging about on an admittedly erratic basis.

If you’re new to my blog because of this carnival, let me briefly introduce myself: I’m a mama of two girls, 3 and 5 ½. My “cred” in natural parenting comes from extended breastfeeding, co-sleeping, homebirthing, baby-wearing, relatively green-living and working at being a mindful, gentle parent.

This month’s topic is Parenting Resolutions. I do consider my parenting skills a work in progress, so this is perfect for me. My children challenge me every day. I am constantly struggling to come up with creative solutions to problems and to figure out the best way to help my daughters realize their full potential. To this end, my parenting resolutions are to attend at least one parenting class and follow through the counseling sessions I’ve set up for my 5 year old. Exciting, huh?

I’ve always been a “parent from the heart” kind of mama, but the reality is, my heart doesn’t often know the answer. The reality is, I need help—I need a class. Honestly, I’d go to every class under the sun if our budget allowed for it. Specifically, what I’m planning on attending are a series of classes called Sanity Circus, which are put on by the Puget Sound Adlerian Society and is “a traveling course for parents who want more respectful, cooperative, and, yes, more joyful relationships with children.” I would say that description fits me to a “T”. Part of my resolution is not only to attend this course, but to put its ideas to work in our household.

As far as setting up counseling sessions for my five year old, I vacillate between feeling like “oh my god I’ve already ruined my child and she’s only 5!” and “wow, check out how aware and loving I am to get her help before she turns in to a total and complete nutcase!”. Most of the time I’m somewhere in between, but it’s still a difficult realization of what I’m facing. I’ve written about my 5 year old’s anxiety issues several times here on my blog, lamenting, complaining, and crying about what she is going through. Finally I reached the point where I needed outside help with her. She is too scared, too sad and too burdened for a 5 year old and, although I can relate, I can’t fix her with the tools I already have.

Starting this week she and I are going to be attending regular counseling sessions with the goal of easing her anxiety and teaching me the tools I will need to not only support her, but to ease my own anxiety, as well. Finding the counselor was my first step, now we need to attend the sessions and follow through on the work.

I look forward to looking back on 2010 as being the year I found some much-needed answers to help our family operate with more love, respect and joy.


Carnival of Natural Parenting -- Hobo Mama and Code Name: MamaVisit Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama to find out how you can participate in the next Carnival of Natural Parenting!

Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants:

(All the links should be active by noon on Jan. 12. Go to Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama for the most recently updated list.)

• To Yell or Not to YellThe Adventures of Lactating Girl
• It Is All About Empathy: Nurturing a Toddler's Compassion PotentialBaby Dust Diaries
• To my babies: this year…BluebirdMama
• Mindfully Loving My ChildrenBreastfeeding Moms Unite!
• January Carnival of Natural Parenting: ResolutionsCode Name: Mama
• Imperfect MotherConsider Eden
• ResolutionsCraphead (aka Mommy)
• FC Mom's Parenting Resolutions 2010FC Mom
• What’s in a Resolution?Happy Mothering
• January Carnival of Natural Parenting: Parenting resolutionsHobo Mama
• Natural Parenting ResolutionsLittle Green Blog
• This year, I will mostly...Look Left of the Pleiades
• Parenting ResolutionsThe Mahogany Way
• I Resolve to Breastfeed In Public More Oftenmama2mama tips
• Moving to Two KidsMegna the Destroyer
• Use LoveMomopoly
• My parenting resolutionsMusings of a Milk Maker
• Talkin' 'bout My ResolutionsNavelgazing
• Parenting ResolutionsOne Starry Night
• Invitations, not resolutionsRaising My Boychick
• No more multitasking during kid timeThe Recovering Procrastinator
• I need to slow down, smell those roses AND the poopy diapersTales of a Kitchen Witch Momma
• Resolutely Parenting in 2010This Is Worthwhile


  1. Good luck with the course and the counselling sessions. I think you are wonderful to recognise these needs and address them. I hope everything works out for you and you have a wonderful year.

    Warm wishes
    Rae aka mrs green @littlegreenblog.com

  2. I think it's so insightful of you that you're doing this for your daughter. I don't know how I'd deal with anxiety issues like you describe, but I would definitely want help. I feel sad that she gets upset so often, but I'm glad you're not dismissing it and are so concerned for her and seeking the best path. It sounds like you've found a couple really good places that should give you both the support you need. I look forward to hearing how it goes for you.

    Thanks again so much for writing for the carnival!

  3. My younger sister struggled with anxiety as we were growing up and, as a result, my mom also struggled with how to best parent her. Ultimately, she did do a great job with getting her help and support (as a sibling of a high maintenance child, I can't say I was as supportive...). It sounds like you're being very proactive and your daughter is lucky to have a mom like you.

  4. Wishing you and your daughter much clarity and calm this year. You are a great mama!

  5. All I have to say is do you and I ever have something in common! Five year olds with anxiety problems! Oh right, and all the Natural Parenting stuff too! I'm looking forward to newly following your blog! It appears our girls are exactly the same difference in age as well. Neat!

  6. This is my first time in a blog carnival too and I'm having a great time discovering all these new like-minded parents.
    Best of luck with your resolutions - I like that you've focused on just two very specific things that will likely create a huge shift in your family.

  7. I hope your daughter gets the help she needs at counseling. As someone who has struggled with anxiety I know couseling changed my life! Good luck and nice to meet you! I'm looking forward to following your blog!

  8. That's awesome. I'm sure the additional support will help you both. I'm looking forward to reading about your progress!

  9. I can't imagine having anxiety at that age. I'm 30 and it's hard for me right now!
    Have you read the book Raising Your Spirited Child? That book popped into my head while I was reading your post.
    It helped me to really understand my daughter and myself more.

    I think it's awesome that your so tuned in to her like that.
    I also love your Natural Parenting Creds.

  10. Thank you for this refreshingly honest post. I think we all wish we had a class to teach us the ins and outs. It's not that our hearts don't know what to do; we're afraid that they don't. Praying for you and your daughter. Anxiety stinks. I've struggled with it myself.

  11. I think counseling is brave, proactive, and smart. Ignore the stigma and push through with your instincts (which are to educate yourself and empower your daughter).

    One of my favorite quotes is from my mother, "Would you try to fly a plane without reading the manual or taking lessons first? Then why would you try to raise a human being without doing the same??" It sounds like you're of the same mind and I commend you for it.

    Hang in there. Kids are resilient and your daughter is exceptionally lucky to have a mama who is determined to help her.


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