5 Pieces of Advice For Mama D's Listeners
- Our Guest Appearance on Petals of Support
For those of you who don't know, Caitlin and Mama D go WAY back.
Early on in this show's life on social media, Mama D found the CK & GK Podcast and became a listener. She caught Caitlin's attention on Twitter, and they regularly exchanged pleasantries (and still do!).
Caitlin quickly became a fan of Mama D's podcast Petals of Support for its reminders to be gentle with yourself because you deserve that. Caitlin still turns to Mama D's show weekly for her kindness and relatable advice for thinking about your life and relationships.
Not too long ago, Mama D reached out to us to join a recording session with her for one of her amazing sleepover episodes -- a series in which she has guests offer advice that they have for others. We jumped at the opportunity because we knew we'd get to meet Mama D!
Below, find the advice that we gave on our sleepover episodes. And thanks for listening!
Caitlin: Let people help you. And, related – ‘see a need, fill that need.’
I am someone who doesn’t like to ask for help. I am independent and always have been. But, especially since becoming a parent, I am painfully aware of the many things that I can’t do, whether it’s because I am actually incapable of doing them or because there simply aren’t enough hours in the day.
But, because I don’t like asking for help, I do better when someone just steps in and does something. Observe what needs to be done and then do it. For example, don’t ask a new parent what they need. Either make a list and have them choose or, if you know them well enough, just bring dinner/coffee/protein bars, wash some dishes and move the laundry from the washer to the dryer, and leave.
Caitlin, from a teacher: The sooner you accept that your child acts differently when they’re away from you. Behavior issues will come up and that phone call from a teacher is inevitable.
No one is perfect, not even your precious angel. And that’s hard to accept because you’ve probably invested a lot of yourself and your time into making sure your child knows the expectations you’ve laid out for their behavior.
That said, when you aren’t around, they WILL test all of the boundaries. They WILL have a hard time regulating their emotions. They WILL do things that you wouldn’t expect or that will surprise you.
Trusting that your child’s teacher is telling the truth about all of the things they describe to you about your child CAN be done. And, you CAN believe the teacher and advocate for your child at the same time.
Start by asking questions. My favorite question to ask during a behavior call is “Can you help me understand?” It works on the child and on the teacher and will provide some context.
From there, you can problem-solve and troubleshoot.
You can also say “I think we have a plan moving forward” and then share that plan with everyone. Open communication is always better than none.
If you’re upset when you get the initial call or email, it’s absolutely okay to say “Thank you for telling me. Can I get back to you tomorrow when I’ve had a chance to process all of this?” Don’t respond right away. You’re trying to preserve the relationships between everyone involved.
Caitlin: Your parents are flawed humans, just like you. Your relationship with them can be better when you give them the grace and empathy that everyone needs to make mistakes.
This is one of the hardest things to learn. When you’re a kid, your world is your parents. And maybe you had a difficult childhood, or maybe you didn’t, but everyone will experience that moment when you realize that your parents aren’t perfect, they’re just human. And what you choose to do with that information is powerful.
You can accept it and move on with your parents or without them
You can deny it and move on with your parents or without them
Keeping this in mind will help you when you’re trying to understand the things that impact your other relationships.
Jenny: “Use the stickers.”
I mentioned this in an episode we did about self-care and it really stuck with Caitlin. Just use them. Do the little things that will make you happy and stop saving things for special occasions. Burn that nice candle. Use the fancy soap. Paint your nails that sparkly color.
Today can be special. Don’t be Madonna - we are living in a material world, but memories are more important. You will be thankful that you gave yourself permission to celebrate those moments.
Jenny: Remember “process not product.”
Work on your growth mindset – yet is the most important word in the English language!
I can’t do this…yet…
I can’t do this right now…
I can’t do this without help…
I can’t do this without time to get better…
We ask this of our students, we ask this of our children – don’t forget to ask this of yourself!
We hope you enjoyed this 2-part series with Mama D of Petals of Support. Find her info here.
Thank you to the lovely and kind Mama D for having us.
Use the stickers!
Caitlin & Jenny