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Parenting in Your Thirties

Deb Clarke


I used to think that being 30 was old. Now, I think being in my 30's means quite a bit moreespecially since I'm halfway through them. It means maturity. It means stability. It means knowing who you are and what you want. It means going after the important stuff and not sweating the small stuff. It means you've finally made it to adulthood!

Don't get me wrong, some people find this bliss early while in their 20's while others may not find it until later in their lives.

I know the only way to measure my growth is in my parenting skills. I now don't have the time for arguments that will lead to nowhere. I don't have the patience to always get my way. And I sure don't have the energy to chase after a 17 month old unless it is for pleasure's sake. I sometimes amaze myself in how I handle certain situations. Like today, for instance. I was unloading the dishwasher this morning when Nathan decided it was better if he helped me. If I were his parent in my 20's, I think I would have either yelled at him or told him to leave me alone. Don't get me wrong, the urge is still there sometimes, but I'm much calmer in my old age! Instead, I give in and make a game out of it. Now he gets the silverware out of the basket and hands me each piece to put away. It takes me a bit longer to do, but we both get something out of it. Nathan gets a learning game and I get the satisfaction of keeping my cool and seeing him enjoy his time with me.

I am fortunate that I am able to be a stay-at-home mom. This took me about 6 months to get used to. I lost a real sense of myself. For many years, I searched for the perfect career, the perfect friends, and the perfect apartment. These were my status symbols. These accomplishments determined my worth. And, in a quick turn of events, all the time and energy I put into building "me" was gone. I was now a mom. I loved the job right off the bat, but I missed who I used to be. My value system changed with out sending me so much as an e-mail! It took me until Nathan was about a year old to re-establish my values. Now my worth is measured in how happy my son is.

I'm glad I spent the time I had in my 20's to work on me. It has paid off well in many areas. I couldn't imagine working on building me while helping to build my child. I guess the best thing I've learned about parenting in my 30's is how not to be selfish. I'm no longer selfish with my time, I'm not selfish with my love, and, above it all, I'm not selfish in sharing me. I really like being a mom.

I may even admit that I like being 30 something.well, maybe!

Hello! My name is Deb Clarke. I was introduced to the Baby Corner by my "cyber mom" friend, Anne Cavicchi. I am the proud mom to Nathan, born November 22, 1998 (aka Nate the Great). I have been married to a wonderful man, Andrew, since February 13, 1998. If you do the math, you will find that we conceived Nathan on our wedding night. I enjoy being a mom greatly and am trying my hand at writing for this wonderful site! I hope you enjoy my contributions.

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