Blessed are the youngest children, for they shall reap the benefits of parents who have relaxed the rules.
As my six-year-old zombie ran door-to-door trick-or-treating, I couldn’t help but think about the ways I have changed as a parent over the years. I’m sure I could come up with many examples, but here are five that came to mind quickly.
1. Halloween Costumes
There’s no way I would have let my other two be such scary characters for Halloween, but Lewis went as one of the brain-eating-undead. And you can see by the photo, he played the zombie role well. Maybe we’ll see if we can get him a part on The Walking Dead.
2. Happy Meals.
For the older two it was a treat just to go to McDonalds. Happy Meals were an extra special treat on those rare occasions when I decided to splurge and veer off the the Dollar Menu. For Lewis, Mcdonalds and Happy Meals are pretty much synonymous.
I’ve always been relatively lax about the clothes my children wear. If you knew Owen from age two to age four, you remember that he went E.V.E.R.Y.W.H.E.R.E in costume. But I generally made the older two vary the clothes they wore to school. It’s a different story with Lewis. His shirt might be too small. His pants might be ripped. He might be completely mismatched. And it’s highly likely that it’s the third time he’s worn it this week. But hey, if he’s got all the major body parts covered, I’m good with that.
I never gave in to the requests for gum and candy while I stood in the check-out line with the older two boys, but I almost always buy gum for Lewis. I don’t even chew it, but I always keep a supply for my little man.
5. Video Games
I fought hard against the introduction of video games to our household. I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but I’m the only girl around here, and being seriously outnumbered caused me to slowly lose the battle. The older two were thrilled to get a Leapster when they were six or seven so they could play educational games. I think Lewis could kick my butt in Mario Kart on the DS when he was three.
So there you have it. I’m not recommending my parenting choices or saying I’m right. I’m just telling it like it is. I have changed. Now I think I’m going to go play some Minecraft before lunch 😉
How about you? Did you ease up on the rules somewhere between baby #1 and the caboose of the family?