13 December 2010

Trust vs Control: What's the Right Way to Let Go?

As part of my NannyEnabledWorkingMom (NEWMom) effort to let go of my mom guilt and reduce some of my burden during this pregnancy, I was trying to be less controlling. My basic theory: You can’t let go of the “I’ve abandoned my child” thoughts if you don’t trust your caregiver. And, since you’ve chosen your caregiver, you should be able to give up control with no worries, right?

Well, it backfired on me recently, this mantra. I discovered that Dear A took K, on the bus, to the far south west of the city (we live centrally) on an unplanned, and worse still, personal errand.

Once the “if something had happened, I wouldn’t have known where he was…” panic subsided, I realized that while I have to give up micro-managing. I can’t give up managing.

The only way this whole guilt-free NEWMom manifesto is going to work is if we’ve made our expectations, rules, and intentions clear before handing over our children.

When K was a baby, we had a daily journal for Dear A and me to compare notes on how many ounces of milk he consumed, how many dirty diapers etc. I don’t know that this approach is practical for an older child. Instead, I’ve decided to come up with an updated weekly sheet where I can jot down my few notes for each day and open up the dialogue again on K’s day to day.

Email me if you'd like a copy of my test sheet. I’d love your feedback, comments etc.

We'll see how this goes. In the meantime, I'm going to keep repeating my mantra....

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