Recently, a friend of mine told me about "free range parenting." This is where your kid plays freely while you watch, fostering independence. Again, I am very loosely summarizing the mission of this group, but that is the general idea I get. So now I sit here, and excuse my teenage text speak, but I can't help but say "W...T...F..."
Why? Do we adult women carry that teenage need to belong and the young adult desire to stand for something into parenting? Why do we need to define ourselves like this? How about this approach- moderation? How about just being a mom? When my toddler is teething and crying and wants to be consoled, I hold her close. It is natural. I did not read it on a website for attachment parenting. When my children want to explore and play, I foster it. I watch and encourage and ask and answer questions ad nauseum. Not a novel idea. Why do I have to choose one of these approaches? And why do we grown women have such a need to belong?
Yep. I can be reasonably green. I am not going to cloth diaper. Good for you if you want to. I conserve water and recycle. There is a middle ground between pureeing organic kale and feeding your kids McDonalds. My preschooler loves Easy Mac and is underweight and picky. Shoot me. He eats organic bananas and carrots. He also eats a chocolate chip cookie every day. Pick your battles.
And, really... is "everything in moderation" dead? It never will be to me. My four year old does not drink pop, but he also does not exclusively drink organic milk or breastmilk. He has regular old 2% from the store, juice now and then, and juice boxes at parties or when we have guests. I am a firm believer in the fact that extremes turn people off. Your attachment parenting makes me want to set your kid free. Your free range parenting makes me want to cuddle your kid for you. How about getting off the internet (which would seem rather difficult anyway with your organic moby wrap) and just doing whatever it seems your kid wants you to do? It is pretty easy when you focus on your individual kid.