Trust and Relax

I just read an article about the physical changes that occur in a woman’s brain after giving birth. Changes in what they called the “maternal brain circuitry” explain some of the bonding that occurs between mother and child, the love and protectiveness that follows. I like to call this the “mama bear” attitude in which Mama is ready to protect her off-spring at all costs.

And don’t worry, Papa-Bears! There is some brain related changes that occur in your brains too when caring for your newborn that explains some of your papa-bear attitudes…

The article was very interesting and explained a lot about my feeling and emotions when my children arrived in the world. But children grow and they grow quickly!  Soon, life moves on and you don’t get to be with them 24-7. For some parents this happens at 3 months when maternity leave ends, for others it ends at 2 or 4 when the child enters daycare or preschool. How can a mama-bear radar still work when the children are miles away?

The simplistic, but realistic answer to this question is one simple word, Trust.  We need to trust in the people that are caring for our children to do the best job possible in the moment. We need to know that these people have our child’s best interest at heart. This includes bus drivers, teachers, nannies, babysitters, daycare workers and all of the people that help our child’s day go smoothly.

How do we create this trust?  This involves asking questions, learning about personalities and curriculum, learning about discipline approaches and reward systems. It means sharing your desires for how your child is treated and cared for.  When Jeff meets with parents to learn about their nanny desires, many have detailed answers to questions regarding parenting style, discipline desires and educational approaches. Don’t be afraid to share this with people who are caring for your child.

And then we need to relax. We need to be confident in our decisions and allow the team of caregivers we’ve found to help us care for our child.  Ask them for stories about your child’s day and when your child is able, ask them to share their stories about the day. Listen for details of things that might need to be addressed and simply sit back and enjoy hearing about the wonderful experiences your child is having and the learning that is occurring in every moment.

Your mama and papa bear radars will probably never completely turn off, but you can put your trust in the people around you that help care for your child and relax and enjoy this parenting life!

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