Summer has always been my favorite season. There’s so many more options for activities when it’s warm and days are longer. Being a Mom has only intensified this feeling. I want to expose my kid to as much fun (and learning) as possible!
As fall was giving way to winter, I began getting nervous about the idea of not having enough activities for my daughter. The time from when she wakes up until her nap can seem like it goes on forever. I decided that we should break that up by going some place every morning. Panic attacks while driving decided otherwise.
I found some relief when we started having temperatures around zero degrees, and slippery roads. It took the pressure off me to feel like I needed to be somewhere exciting with my daughter. I started thinking back to my own childhood and the fun I had just playing.
That’s when I realized: we seldom went places to be entertained. I was quite content to color or play with legos at home! So, why did it seem like all of my Mom friends (and myself) were taking our kids out as often as possible?
Could it be that seeing all of the cool things our friends are doing with their kids on Facebook and Instagram makes us feel pressured to do the same?
Whenever I see photos of my friends’ kids somewhere that we haven’t been to yet, it gets added to my mental list. These things should be something fun to look forward to. Instead, I feel guilty that I haven’t checked everything off the list yet. I’m comparing my parenting to theirs.
I had no idea that the busy trap could start this young. I should write off more activities due to my daughter only being a year and a half old. But then I’ll see a kid the same age doing something on Facebook I didn’t think my kid was ready for! A perfect example of this is meeting Santa. Even though our daughter was starting to recognize Santa, doesn’t mean that she wanted to sit in a stranger’s lap! But everyone else was sharing their Santa photos online.
Even on the weekends, when my husband is home, I feel pressure to be doing something exciting as a family. My husband misses out on all of the cool things we do together during the week. I’m working on letting them go do things together – without me taking photos – so that I can get a little break.
I love our family time together. But that doesn’t mean it has to be a big outing. And, I don’t always need to prove it to the world! Parenting is not performance art.
Do you think your family activities are affected by what you see online?