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Sweating the Small Stuff: How Blogging has Helped Me Become a Better Parent

addie2Casey has been a blogger for a little over 7 years now. I’ve heard others ask her philosophical questions about how blogging about your kids can end up affecting them later in life.  Most people seem to want to know whether bloggers are so focused on writing about their kids that they don’t have time to actually be parents to them, and if bloggers are worried about some of the things they write later hurting their child.

Those conversations used to be a sign that it was time for me to go find another conversation to listen to. I didn’t care about the answers to those questions and I didn’t think about the answers. It just didn’t matter to me.

Now that I’ve had a chance to see things from Casey’s side as a blogger, those questions are more important and I’ve noticed that blogging about parenting can bring some very positive consequences, and a lot of those positive consequences can be found in the recent post I wrote about the things I learned from Vivi as a toddler.

Although I took the things I’ve learned from Vivi as positive steps I’ve taken in my life, some people took the post as a bad thing for Addie.

One person commented:

 addievvivi2

After reading the comment I asked Casey what she thought about the post and she agreed, that it made her feel bad for Addie. It made her feel like Vivi was my favorite and that Addie was an afterthought.

I can’t disagree with Alicia or my wife, sometimes I wonder if Addie will eventually feel the same way. I wonder if Addie will feel like she wasn’t important enough for me to spend as much time with her when she was a toddler as I have with Vivi, and that puts me in a sort of catch 22. Do I spend less time with Vivi so I can give Addie extra time to make up for the times I missed when she was younger to show Addie that she and Vivi are on equal ground, or do I continue to spend as much time as I have with Vivi as I work to become a better parent?

Either way I hurt Vivi or I hurt Addie.

For me the answer is simple: I try to become the best parent I can be and that means spending time with Vivi and Addie together as much as possible.

My time as a parent is so much different now than it was when Addie was a toddler. When Addie was a toddler I was constantly at school or at work and my time was scarce. My focus back then was on trying to put together a career so I could support my family. It wasn’t focused on being a parent or raising Addie. Consequently, I made a lot of mistakes as a parent and I missed quite a bit of Addie’s younger years.

Now with Vivi I’m past school and I’m past working two full-time jobs while trying to support a family. I’m blessed now to have a steady job that doesn’t require many long hours that allows me to spend quite a bit of time with both of my kids. I’m also not nearly as worried as I used to be about getting good grades or working extra hours to make extra money. My focus when I’m away from the office is on my family where it should be.

Being a blogger has only helped with my decision to spend more time with my family. It has helped me recognize the little moments I could easily miss if my attention were on something else. I noticed that spending time with Vivi at night is a moment I get to have with my child that may not last much longer. I’ve noticed that spending time sitting on the floor playing with Vivi and her toys will pass quickly too.

Just as I’ve noticed all those things with Vivi, I’ve also noticed similar moments with Addie. For instance, when I put Vivi to bed at night I’ve realized how easy it is to walk to the next room and kiss Addie good night. Also, each morning Addie and I both look forward to eating breakfast together as Addie gets ready for school and I get ready for work. That time each morning is our time and it isn’t shared with anyone else in the house, and Addie gets excited each morning when I start pouring my bowl of cereal.

Although I missed quite a bit of Addie’s younger years, I’m not missing out on anything anymore. It’s far too late to go back and correct the mistakes I made when she was younger. All I can do now is spend as much time as I possibly can with her now and hope that it’s enough to let her know how much I love her.

Read more about my family on Moosh in Indy or follow me on Twitter!

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More on Babble Dad:

10 Things I’ve Learned From My Toddler

The Most Difficult Moment: 10 Reasons Why I Decided not to get Divorced

Pictures to Prove that Cancun, Mexico is the Perfect Winter Vacation Location

Toddler Problems: Vivi Refuses to Eat

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