What do you mean he can’t listen?

by Michelle Lasley

Michelle Lasley is a mother, wife in Pacific Northwest learning to balance green dreams with budget realities.

January 16, 2011


Categories: Family, Parenting

Levi, Christmas, and Cars
Image by alexis22578 via Flickr

Some aspects of parenting feature “Duh” moments. Sometimes regularly. I can’t believe what a learning curve this is, and how amazing it is to watch, every day. Sorry, terrible twos don’t exist, but terrible threes, and frustrating fours (so I’ve been told), now that’s another story. No one can tell you. But, experienced parents can giggle and chcuckle when you (I) have these realizaitons.

Levi was 18 months old. I was trying to teach him to pick up his toys. Why won’t he pick up the green block, I wondered. Oh, right, he doesn’t know his colors! So very obvious to some, but not something I thought of until then.

What I knew:

  • He should start walking around a year to a year and a half
  • Potty training happens after two years old, but don’t push them because they’ll resist
  • Breast is best
  • Kids in cloth diapers tend to potty train sooner
  • A water birth, in theory, is more “natural”
  • He’ll start talking eventually, and he’ll probably say something embarrassing
  • At some point he’s going to push back
  • He’ll need a schedule, regularity

What I learned while pregnant:

  • He needs tummy time to learn to crawl, get stronger, and eventually learn to walk
  • Breast feed the kiddo until at least 6 months
  • There are these things called milestones!
  • There are an awful lot of recommended shots
  • He has a heart beat at 13 weeks, and boys tend to have faster heart beats in utero

What I started to learn that first year or four

  • Things are going to break and get messy
  • You’ll never imagine how many shirts you’ll change because you’ve been thrown up on
  • Life doesn’t go as planned
  • Kiddos have their own schedule, and we work to accommodate and ensure some regularity
  • Walking at 16 months is not late, it’s normal
  • He will get potty-trained when he’s ready, not necessarily when I am
  • Boys’ hearing develops slower than girls’ hearing

I want Levi to grow up to be compassionate, judicious, fair, have the ability to express emotions, be generous, handy (cook his own food and fix his own cars), independent, trustworthy, honest. He’s smart. We know that. We know he’s smarter than we are. So, I want him to put his brains to good use – fair use, responsible use.

It’s an interesting, humbling ride. I wouldn’t trade it for the world, even if I look at parts of my historic single-life with some longing. There’s something heart-wrenching that fills a biological need when he calls, “Mommy!”

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