Posts Tagged ‘ new year ’

Make New Year’s Absolutions (Instead of Resolutions)

Tuesday, January 1st, 2013

New Year confetti and balloonsEditor’s Note: In a post for an ongoing series, Dr. Harley A. Rotbart, a Parents advisor, will be guest blogging once a month. He will be offering different advice, tips, and personal stories on how parents can “savor the moment” and maximize the time they spend with kids. Read more posts by Harley Rotbart from this series.

New Year’s resolutions are a nice concept but risky business – if we don’t live up to those bold promises we feel like failures. For parents, this can be particularly tough, as we often make resolutions not only for ourselves but for our families, and this magnifies the chances of falling short and feeling guilty (We should have tried harder, done more).

For this New Year, I propose that parents avoid resolutions entirely and, instead, grant themselves absolutions. Absolutions are acts of forgiveness, amnesty from shortcomings real or imagined. The following New Year’s Absolutions are conditional upon your making one simple resolution – that you will always try to be the best parent you can. If you fulfill this resolution, you may hereby grant yourself absolution from any guilt associated with these inevitable situations in the coming year:

  1. Missing an occasional soccer game, dance rehearsal, karate match, or piano recital (no matter how hard you try to be at every one).
  2. Missing a PTA meeting or two, or failing to volunteer for the big school fund-raiser (how could they not have checked your calendar before scheduling?).
  3. Coming up short of a culinary masterpiece for dinner some nights (or maybe most nights!).
  4. Feeding your kids Pop-Tarts for breakfast in the car on the way to school on those rare chaotic mornings. (Rare?!)
  5. Allowing unavoidable work to occasionally interfere with family time.
  6. Letting some weekends slip away without accomplishing any of the planned family activities.
  7. Sneaking off to a far corner of the house to scream when your kids have pushed you to the limit.
  8. Caving in to your kids’ requests for more TV or video game time than you prefer, so you can have a little peace and quiet.
  9. Letting your mind wander to the dishes in the sink or the lawn that needs mowing when your kids are telling you the most important thing about their day.
  10. Catching yourself saying the same dreadful things to your kids that your parents said to you: “Because I said so” or “You’ll understand when you grow up.”
  11. Falling asleep before your kids during their bedtime story.
  12. Letting your kids out of the car in the school drop-off line before their hair is brushed (and is that the same shirt they wore yesterday?).
  13. Receiving a call from your child’s teacher telling you that your kid taped a classmate’s legs to the chair during arts and crafts.
  14. Doing more of your kids’ homework than you know you should, just to get it done and get them to bed.
  15. Believing that other parents are always doing a better job at everything than you are.

So this New Year, lose the guilt. Give yourself a break and be realistic about parenting; you’re doing a great job, most of the time. And, even when you wish you could do better, be wiser, and show more patience, that consciousness about your parenting proves your love and commitment to your kids. It is this love and commitment that will become your legacy as parents, for this New Year and beyond. Happy and healthy 2013 to all!

Dr. Harley A. RotbartDr. Harley A. Rotbart is Professor and Vice Chairman of Pediatrics at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and Children’s Hospital Colorado. He is the author of three books for parents and families, including the recent No Regrets Parenting, a Parents advisor, and a contributor to The New York Times Motherlode blog. Visit his blog at noregretsparenting.com and follow him on Facebook and Twitter (@NoRegretsParent).

 

Image: Multicolored balloons and confetti via Shutterstock

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Parents Daily News Roundup

Monday, December 31st, 2012

Goody Blog Daily News Roundup

Pediatricians Say Recess Is As Important as Math or Reading
Recess can be a critical time for development and social interaction, and in a new policy statement published in the journal Pediatrics, pediatricians from the AAP support the importance of having a scheduled break in the school day. (via TIME)

Moms Push to Have First Babies of the New Year
The odds of having a baby in the first minute of the year aren’t far from the odds of getting struck by lightning, said Dr. Jennifer Austin, an OB/GYN at Kaiser Permanente in San Francisco. Yet every year, several mothers strive to do so. (via ABC News)

Every School Needs a Doctor, Pediatricians Say
Despite no federal or uniform state requirements to do so, all school districts should have a doctor to oversee school health services, according to a policy statement from a group of American pediatricians. (via Reuters)

FDA Approves First Tuberculosis Drug in 40 Years
The Food and Drug Administration says it has approved a Johnson & Johnson tuberculosis drug that is the first new medicine to fight the deadly infection in more than four decades. (via Associated Press)

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1/1/11: Our New Year’s Baby

Friday, February 11th, 2011

Couples may be actively trying for an 11/11/11 due date, but the truth is that the coolest birth date of them all was taken, by none other than my own sweet new daughter Yael, born on New Year’s Day, 1/1/11.

Though she wasn’t due until 1/11/11, an awesome due date in and of itself, Stephanie had been having contractions on and off for a few days in late December. During a quiet New Year’s Eve dinner at home with our 4-year-old Adira and next-door-neighbor Claudia, Stephanie announced that this was It, the real thing, labor. As luck would have it, Claudia had previously agreed to stay with Adira when the time came, so we got our stuff together and headed out.

I’ll say this for a New Year’s Eve labor: the Labor & Delivery floor was quiet, and the nurses were in a festive mood (and wearing goofy New Year’s hats). They confirmed that Stephanie was, indeed, in labor. And things picked up for a while there. Contractions came quicker and were more intense. We were on our way.

Until it seemed like we weren’t. By morning on New Year’s Day, the contractions had all but stopped and we began to think we’d be having a Jan. 2 baby. By evening, we were dejected, exhausted, and wondering who would stay with Adira for that second night. Stephanie’s OB recommended a sedative so she could sleep for a few hours and regain her energy. He even suggested I go home to get some rest myself and sort out the childcare situation. “You have at least two hours, probably three or more,” he assured me. (more…)

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