Something has really been weighing on my heart lately and I feel like I need to get real and just get it out. NO. The answer is no and I don't need a reason but, I will give you a few later anyways. No to the event you want me to bring my kids to that is not really kid appropriate. No to your outting that starts at the precise time that my newborn starts her long block of sleep at night. No to you coming to visit said newborn during a time of the day that isn't going to "work" for us.
I have criticized people, let's be really honest here, moms, in the past for running a tight ship. Let's just said our ship sails have been less than "snug" in our house. But, in my ripe old age and with mothering experience I realized a few things. Whatever way they are captaining their ship is none of my business. It affects me likely not at all. If they refuse to have their kids miss a nap, fine. If they don't allow sugar in their house, we will eat our candy when we get home.
The way that someone else parents does not lessen or heighten my parenting style at all. We are all doing it "right."
What happens to be "right" for my family this year, in this stage is saying no. Honestly evaluating situations, assesing their value and saying, thanks but no thanks. Right not we are just not at a point in our lives that we have the ability to say yes to everything for a number of reasons. The major ones being we have a two and less than two month old and it is the middle of cold and flu season. For me that right there is enough of a reason to say no to 90% of the requests.
I am not saying that we are going to be in a bubble for the rest of our lives. I am sayig that we are in a very transitional period in our lives and it is time to focus on us. Our realtionships with our kids and each other. Also, I am not saying that we are going to say no to every single thing. I do want to say though I feel there is a stigma around the word no and a deep guilt that is felt by us for saying it. So, if you feel like you need permission to get out of something that is going to cause you or your family unnecesary stress, or you flat out don't want to do it, here it is.
Just say no. What is worse, saying not to a chaotic party that doesn't have anything age appropriate for your kids to do and runs into nap times and ineveitably causes a fight with your spouse either at the event or on the way to or from it, or, just saying no politely we can't make it, and sending a card.
Don't get me wrong my husband and I do not get into an argument every time we go to an event. However, when we force ourselves and daughter(s) to do something that we have been dreading all week, or we honestly know ahead of time is going to end in an epic meltdown, likely from our oldest, it puts a big stress on us all. I care about you, whoever you are inviting me to something. But, maybe we are just in different points in our lives. Someday I'll be in a position to go all Shonda Rhymes and yes it up. This year is not that point in my life. For my childless peeps, saying yes now means finding someone who will watch BOTH of my children, so whatever the night out costs, double it. Anything we decide to do now has to be REALLY worth it. Like your wedding, don't worry I never miss an opportunity to do the Wobble.
I want to say yes to what is going to be the best for my girls especially and keeping them healthy and comfortable. So no. We can't come. We would love for you to come spend time with us though, in our baby proofed home, or at a child approriate event.
Shauna Hyler, mommy of two beautiful girls! Working, blogging, and adventuring with the hubby and my sweet girls.