It happens to all us parents. I know it happened to you, right?
Some time along the road of parenting, when your child is between the ages of zero and 3 yrs, you will get the best advice ever known to humankind. There will be no other advice that compares. Not before and never again. This advice is pure gold. It is backed by intensive research and experience. The kind where, 'my mother did it, and my mother's mother before, and her mother's mother's mother'.
Perhaps you are lucky enough to have a mother or mother-in-law that will begin handing out this advice right from the moment you give birth. You might be so fortunate as to have it dished out whilst you're dishevelled, groggy, recovering from labour or surgery, and trying desperately to understand if your new baby is latching on correctly. Oh, you are the luckiest of us all!
Perhaps you were fortunate enough to get it during those newborn days. You were instructed on how to bathe, change, and feed your baby, because you just weren't doing it the way her mother did it. And if you were especially fortunate, you were shown how you should be holding her. Silly you, thinking you could hold your baby.
Oh how I envy the parents who had colicky babies! For you are the ones who receive advice by the truckload. And the best part? You usually receive it from someone over the phone whilst the baby is screaming blue murder in your ears.
Perhaps like me, you had to wait a little longer. My moments of advice joy came when my baby was around 7 months old. I was smart enough to do just the thing that brings on advice - I listened to my intuition and my baby. Perfect. And so it started and now, lucky me, at almost 8 months of age, it's in full swing.
Like all this advice that we so desperately want as new parents it comes in handy concise morsels of wisdom.
'You should be feeding her solids'.
I love that word! It just makes everything so crystal clear. There is no room for error or my losing my way. I should. That is all. Thank you!
That's right folks. I'm not talking about ordinary tidbits from friends and family. No, this is the GOOD stuff. This is the 'advice' that really says, 'you're doing it all wrong'. This is the stuff that us parents thrive on. It's the stuff that truly makes us better parents, like no reassurence ever could.
Haven't you started her on solids yet? She really should be having solids by now. I think she looks hungry. She'll probably sleep better if she ate solids. I think she sounds hungry for solids. Please feed her solids. Just a bit or banana, so little! I bet that's why she isn't sleeping well. My baby started solids at x months. Try to feed her some please. She isn't on solids yet?!
I love that last one too. It's the indirect-yet-not-so-subtle approach. The person is shocked but refrains from giving direct advice. Your methods are so extraordinary, it has invited actual shock. Too kind, really.
So parents, if you are sadly missing out on all this expert advice out there, then go ahead, use your intuition and read your baby's cues. You will surely invite it into your life, to be enriched thereafter.
Oh, and if your child is out of the baby stage, don't be sad. New advice will soon follow when you start disciplining all wrong.