I have to tendency to overthink things when it comes to Ayva.
Everything from deciding on which shoes to buy her for school, to picking out a lunchbox can turn into a multi-hour ordeal that causes both her and me unnecessary stress.
In some extreme cases, it can lead to Ayva missing out altogether because it took me way too long to make up my mind. I mean, really? How ridiculous is that?
One Halloween, I went to at least 8 different stores trying to find a costume for Ayva.
I drove myself completely crazy trying to figure out which ensemble she would love the most, that would not be insulting to any cultural groups and that would empower her.
Tall order for one kindergarten size costume, right? In fact, I ended up purchasing 2 different costumes and making another because I just couldn’t choose.
The thing about Ayva that you have to understand is that she’s incredibly easy to please. She’s so grateful for everything that I give her, and it really doesn’t take much to make her happy.
She loved the first Halloween costume that I purchased, and the second one as well. She was over the moon about the costume that Terrence and I put together in 10 minutes before leaving for an event.
All of this overthinking? It’s me.
I want to be a good mom.
Growing up, my parents did the best when it came to taking care of my social-emotional needs. There was a lot about me that they just didn’t get, though.
I’m so different from both of them that often their idea of what was cool wasn’t at all what I liked.
They weren’t really open to suggestions, either. I ended up spending many years being uncomfortable in clothes, shoes, and yes, Halloween costumes, that they bought and liked that didn’t suit me at all.
I want Ayva to have a different experience.
You know what I realized? Ayva will have a different experience.
I’m not my parents, and the relationship that I have with her is unique and special to the two of us. I don’t have to stress out about making sure she’s happy.
She’s going to be just fine. And so will I. And so will you.
Look, parenting isn’t supposed to be easy, but things like picking out a Halloween costume shouldn’t make us crazy.
Children don’t ask for much, and they’re much more flexible and understanding than I think we give them credit for. If you care enough to worry about whether or not your child is happy, or is having fun, you’re already a great mom.
We need that reminder as parents, though. I needed someone to say it to me, and so I’m saying it now to you: You’re doing good. When you’re out there trick-or-treating, or volunteering at the Halloween party at school, tell another parent that they’re doing good, too.
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*This post was originally sponsored by Minute Maid in October 2015.