We have all been one, and chances are that most people at one point or another believe that they will have one of their own. On this web site, babies are our favourite topic, from their care to their recreation and beyond. If you have a child under two years old, from newborn to toddler, then you will find some information that is relevant to you.
There is no doubt that for most people, having a baby is a life changing experience. For some, it might not exactly be the joyous occasion that it is popularly believed; there are plenty of people who just are not ready for that news that they are pregnant. However, we believe that in time even the most reluctant parents will come to find that there really is no greater satisfaction than being a parent, whether you are a mother or a father.
Of course, whether this baby was a part of your five-year plan or whether you found yourself struggling to adjust, the truth is that being a parent is hard work. Possibly the hardest work there is, and the reality is that there is no getting away from it. There is no retirement plan from parenting, there are no holidays (not in the total sense anyway); once you are a parent, you are a parent for life.
And that means you have a lot of responsibility on your plate, particularly during the first few years of your child's life. There will come a time when your only unbreakable tie to your child will be one of the heart, but for the first few years of his or her life everything is up to you; diet, health, instruction, love. It is one of the great mysteries that this task is not nearly so onerous as it might seem were you to write the actual job description of a parent down on paper; most parents agree that the journey itself is a reward.
That being said, one of the harsh realities of parenting is that there are no second chances. Studies increasingly show that who a child will become in their lives is determined in great part by their parents, and at an incredibly young age; the latest statistics say that the foundation is laid in the first six years of your child's life! Talk about a steep learning curve!
The great news for all parents is that most of us have a built in ability to raise children. We know when we screw up, we know when we are doing something right, and that can help to take some of the pressure off.
Today's parent also has an abundance of resources to help us deal with some of the parenting issues that do not come as a part of the common sense package, things such as potty training, discipline, avoiding health issues (including minor ones such as diaper rash) and ensuring great nutrition.
Thanks to the Internet, there are more resources available to the parent than ever before. This can be especially helpful for the parent of a child in the baby and toddler years; you don't really understand what busy is until you find yourself the caregiver and provider of a human being in this age group. Even the changes that they grow through during this time are staggering. Consider all that changes in the life of a human being at these ages:
- We learn to speak.
- We learn to recognize others.
- We double our size.
- We learn to take in nutrition in at least four different ways.
- We become mobile in two to four phases.
- We learn to manipulate our surroundings.
- We learn how to use our bodies.
- We learn how to use the toilet.
- We gain a rudimentary understanding of what/who can help us and what may hurt us.
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And that is just a very basic level; some children may start to read, play an instrument, or show an incredibly advanced athletic skill at this age. No wonder parents feel the burden of responsibility!
The first few years of your child's life are among the most important. Raising them is going to take commitment, energy, and a lot of help, but today's parent has more resources than ever before. Take advantage of them!
This site also has information on how a mom can make her own life easier and more relaxing during the first few years of taking care of her baby. Maybe you would feel better if you didn't have to worry about protecting her kids from Burlington heating units or something simplier, you could treat yourself to a weekly bath with scented candles. There is a whole section devoted to the new mother and her needs.