When a child is born a parent is born and a unique shared journey begins. The parenting journey never ends and it is full of emotions, shared experiences, special and testing times. Here are some of the parenting milestones and memories you will encounter on your parenting journey brought to you in association with WaterWipes.
Two Blue Lines
From even before your child is born, you will begin to create memories. The first milestone for me was seeing the two blue lines on the pregnancy test telling me that my partner and I were to become parents in 9 short months!
What an emotional rollercoaster the first scan is! Exciting and terrifying all rolled into one as you get a first glimpse at your future child and the new life that is growing inside you. The sense of relief you feel as you get to hear the heartbeat, which to me sounded like a race horse galloping down the track, is totally overwhelming.
A Parent is Born
The day your baby is born is a life-changing moment for you and your partner as you become parents. You have responsibility for another human being and there is no manual! Amazing, exhilarating and scary all rolled into one, a true milestone in anyone’s life.
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First Night They Sleep Through
I remember the first night my children slept through. I woke up with a start, my heart racing as I ran to their crib to check they were ok. Thankfully they were slumbering soundly so I sat and watched on as I was too awake now to go back to bed.
I have to say to all you sleep-deprived parents out there, the day will come when your child sleeps through the night, for some it just takes a little longer. And once they reach the teen stage, the trouble will be getting them out of bed at all!
Smiling, Teething, Rolling, Sitting, Crawling, Standing, Walking, Eating
As time marches on the milestones come at an amazing pace. Get yourself a notebook or a diary and jot down each milestone as it happens. Believe me, you think you will remember them forever but the memories fade as new milestones are reached.
- The first smile is so special. It may be just wind, but you won’t care seeing that trusting little face smile back at you is a wondrous thing.
- The first tooth poking out of their gum after months of dribbling.
- The first time they roll over and you realise that nappy changing will be a whole new routine now, really parents should come with 4 arms!
- The first time they sit unaided, the beginning of their journey to independence.
- First foods and tastes, you will definitely need your waterwipes for this part of your parenting journey! From pureed vegetables and fruit to more solid foods you begin to see their personality come out for sure.
- The first time they crawl across the floor and you have to move everything up as they become mobile so quickly.
- The first time they stand unaided and then bump back down with a smile it will melt any heart.
- You watch as they take their first tenuous steps and then grow in confidence until you are running to keep up with them.
- The excitement you feel at they say their first word is it Mum or Dad or Cat or Dog or Hi or another fun word that rolls off their tiny tongues! Soon it will be a million questions as they try to learn as much as they can about the world around them.
As with every first there are always lasts. This lovely poem – The Last Time – sums up the emotions of the parenting journey so well.
Birthdays are a big deal for parents and children. Their first birthday is one you will never forget. And while every birthday was special, the next big one for me was when they turned 10 and moved into double digits! Next come the teen years, when the attitude kicks in as your child grows in confidence, independence and you get a glimpse of the adult they will become. 16 & 18 are other big milestones as they can now learn to drive, vote and leave home to live on their own! Their 21st is always an exciting one and onwards to their 30’s, 40’s and further and they may become parents themselves…but this is for a whole other post.
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Whether your child goes to creche or not, the first day at big school is a milestone you will always remember. They look so little dressed in their stiff uniform with a backpack and a lunch packed ready to go from early in the morning. Have the waterwipes at the ready to catch the tears, probably not from your child who is ready to head off into the world solo, but for you as you realise they are growing up!
Then it’s off to secondary school, longer days, more homework, study and a whole new level of independence. You watch on as your child flourishes and grows into the young person they are to become. There may be tough times during this stage but it usually all works out in the end.
Finally off to college or a job when they may leave home. I am not at this stage yet but I am sure it is an emotional milestone for both the parents and the children. On one hand you are pleased to see them making their way in the world on the other you know it is all change from here.
I have tried to keep a diary for my girls of all the milestones and memories we have gone through together. I will give it to them in the future and I hope it will give them joy and maybe help them if they become parents too.
Over to you now. Do you have any milestones or memories you would like to share with us? Please add them in the comments box below.