This is me.

Apr 23, 2012 by

I’ve been thinking a lot about parenting decisions and thought I’d put myself out there for you.

  1. I am a formula feeder. Breastfeeding was not even a consideration for me.
  2. My birth plan was two-fold: 1) Epidural 2) We both survive. I chose a practice, doctors and hospital I trusted completely.
  3. My choice of hospital was largely based on their NICU. Unfortunately, it turned out to be a good thing because Olivia spent a week there after aspirating meconium at birth.
  4. I would never consider an at-home birth. Admittedly, I don’t know much about them because it’s not on my personal list of options.
  5. I chose to have an elective induction four days before my due date with Audrey.
  6. I have well water and don’t give my girls flouride drops. (We DO brush and floss!)
  7. Audrey sometimes still wakes to eat at night.
  8. Olivia was rear-facing until two years old and I plan to keep Audrey that way as long as possible.
  9. Olivia has been in daycare since twelve weeks and Audrey since sixteen. I love our center. A home-based provider is not for us.
  10. We didn’t sleep train Olivia until she was thirteen months. Audrey was much younger and still wakes at night.
  11. Both of my girls used pacifiers. Olivia till sixteen months and Audrey still has hers at eleven.
  12. Neither of our girls slept in our bed or our room. Ever.
  13. I rocked Olivia to sleep until after her first birthday.
  14. I do not cloth diaper.
  15. I made Olivia’s food when she was a baby, but Audrey has had great success with baby led weaning and eats everything we do (minus common allergens).
  16. I vaccinate on schedule. Including flu shots.
  17. I did not feed Olivia any type of nut product until after her second birthday.
  18. No blankets in the crib until after a year and breathable bumpers only. Back to sleep until they were able to roll themselves.
  19. We chose the town we live in based almost entirely on the public school system.
  20. We have never left them overnight (aside from work trips).
  21. Olivia is not potty trained.
  22. Audrey slept in her swing until she was six months old.

And at the end of it all, I am left with this:

The Wright Family

My kids are healthy. I think they’re pretty happy, too, despite Audrey’s look above. I KNOW that’s the goal of almost all parents. We may mix and match our styles, but we all hope to raise productive members of our society.

…and survive toddlerhood. OMG. (But that’s another post for another day…)

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Stephanie Wright

Stephanie lives in Hartford County with her husband, Tom and their two little girls, Olivia and Audrey. No stranger to the web, she’s been in website production for over fourteen years and recently transitioned to a full time writing and editing position – which makes her journalism-loving self so happy. She hopes to share some stories and (gain?) some tips about the never-ending balancing act of motherhood, work, friendship and marriage.

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  • theclambroll

    Sing it sister! Good for you for being so honest about everything. I think there is such a culture now that’s like, “You must be all-natural and chemical-free and have a home birth in order to be a good mom!” and it can make people who don’t do all those things feel guilty. In the end we are all just trying to do what is best for our kids.

  • marie5k

    loving your post, Stephanie. your honesty is refreshing, and i have to tell you that i can align myself with about 80% of your parenting decisions. i’m so glad you posted this. i may follow suit… and from the looks of your beautiful happy family, you are right on!!

  • thewrightsteph

    And honestly? I think it’s hard for women who make THOSE choices to get the support they need, too. Boo!

  • danielle625

    It is great to be secure in the choices you choose in parenting. I find that many of the “mom wars” to rude comments often come from parents who are not completely secure in the choices that they have made.

    Bravo for being bold!

  • christaallard

    Thanks for this, Steph! I think moms can be fearful about sharing these parenting decisions because they’re afraid of ring judged. There’s no one right way to raise a child; I agree you need to do what feels right to you and what works for your unique family situation.

    My parenting confession? I continue to use my changing pad and foam alphabet play mat, despite having the knowledge that there are reports out there that say they have toxins in them. What can I say, they work for us and I’m just not all that worried about exposure to toxins. Maybe I should be, but I’m not.

    • Michelle

      Christa I hope you know that I personally will not judge you for that choice. While you know how I feel about environmental toxins, I would never think negatively of you for still using those products. xoxo

    • Jen Seiderer

      Ugh, Christa, I don’t judge you either, but how did I miss the memo about toxins in changing pads and play mats? Good lord, how are my kids going to survive with me as a parent? Oh that’s right, I survived MY parents, so my kids are ahead of the game. Whew.

  • Arlene

    Love this post. Only you know whats best for your little ones and don’t let anyone tell you wrong. They are happy healthy girls loving life.

  • thewrightsteph

    Christa… we are right there with ya!

  • Michelle

    Love this post! I LOVE your honesty about everything and like Marie, I share about 80% of these!

  • Kate Andrew

    Thank you for your honesty – we are so quick to judge each other as mom’s, but every parent knows what is best for their family. My son still sleeps in his swing in the mornings (it’s the only way to get him to sleep past 4am!) and we haven’t sleep trained him yet. Also, I’d be really curious to hear more about your experience with BLW – we are trying that with our son too, and it seems to work well so far.

  • thewrightsteph

    Thanks, Kate! Post idea! :)

  • holly

    Great post! We are all met with so many articles, pins, tweets, other moms, etc. that tell us what we should be doing to be that great mom. We love our kids and do everything we know best for them – while also being open to “some” other ideas. And when I get a Happy Meal at McDonald’s for Andrew after t-ball from time to time, I know it’s those moments we have together that are more important than knowing that I shouldn’t be letting him eat that crap! 😉

  • Kate Street

    There is nothing I love more than raw, authentic honesty. BRAVO! I’m a walking contradiction when it comes to Mothering: I homebirth, use disposable diapers, breastfeed until their teenagers (okay, not THAT long) and feed them all the candy they want. I judge NO LONGER what other parents choose to do…it’s just too much damn energy.

  • mommiesq

    What a breath of fresh air!

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