Since having my daughter about a year and a half ago, I've grown a lot.
Over the years, I'd heard other parents say that the moment their child came into the world, the skies parted, they were instantly changed forever, etc. You know the story.
I can’t say it happened that quickly for me; there was just too much going on there in the delivery room.
However, it didn’t take much longer for her to beautifully carve out a piece of my soul.
Along the way, she's sparked some realizations that have gotten me to the place I am today mentally, physically and professionally. I believe we could all learn a little from the babies and toddlers in our lives (and in us).
Here are a few of the lessons I've learned from my toddler:
We are all perfect.
Babies and children (along with puppies, I think) have this special quality about them. I guess some might call it innocence or being. Even if their behavior isn’t always what we would deem ideal (constantly waking up through the night comes to mind), they still are.
Somewhere along the way, life starts to seem complicated and we forget that we were once that perfect and divine. And still are. I've said before that my daughter is the part of me that I never realized was perfect. But now I know it’s that she is making me realize that part of me still is.
This little girl of mine, as she learned to crawl, walk, etc. would climb up things and jump off unabridged if allowed.
She'd take tumble after tumble and still want to get up and run after the ball. While this isn’t necessarily safe and I’m not saying anyone should jump off a bridge (at least not without a bungee cord or parachute), it is worth taking note that those (among others) are things that she has to do to get to the next developmental phase of her life.
If babies were afraid to climb up or down stairs, how would they learn to?
Life is an ongoing developmental rollercoaster.
We are continuously changing and learning and in order embrace life completely and live the lives we want, we may sometimes need to “feel the fear, and do it anyway,” as author Susan Jeffers' book title says.
Boobs are for babies.
Stick with me here. I could (and will someday) go on about this for multiple reasons, but for what I am trying to illustrate here: I'm talking about truly valuing our bodies. People, and especially girls and women, are taught various things about our bodies as we move through this world.
Whether from peers or the media, many of us come to feel uncomfortable or dislike our bodies. Since breastfeeding my daughter, I have come to the realization of how sexualized women’s breasts are, to the point that many women are afraid or nervous to breastfeed in public or even breastfeed at all.
As I already mentioned, this is a huge, huge, gigantic topic for another article(s). However, one of the things she's helped me to do is know the importance of taking back the true value and significance of the bodies that we have.
And to care for them accordingly.
Even if you don’t have a little one at home (human or canine), thinking about these things can help to move us along the path we were meant to travel. I've recently put an old photo of me as a baby on my vision board as a cue to remember that baby is me.