I was inspired to write this article after seeing a post on Instagram in which a mom had written a beautiful message to get us to stop feeling guilty about all these “cultural” rules that we are “stuck with” concerning our kids. Those same rules that make us feel bad or stressed whenever we break one of them (or that someone we know can’t help but comment about it).
It was something like this:
To let the housework wait;
To have cereals for dinner;
To skip a bath;
For me, it’s a good tip that I try to follow in every aspect of my life. It helps me to go through things that stress me out and even to focus on what’s really important for me and my family (because after all, it’s all that matters).
THE RULES AND CUSTOMS OF EVERY CULTURE
But it made me smile because, while travelling, we quickly realize that the rules and customs concerning children are very different in every culture – and the children don’t thrive any less because of that.
The points that the mom was mentioning in her post are almost all (and even more) things that I have to tolerate during this trip around the world. That’s because they aren’t the norm in the countries we’re visiting and/or that is what will allow me to survive mentally and energetically speaking of our trip around the world. ?
BREAKING THE MOULD
And that’s what is nice when we get out of the mould in which we live to uproot ourselves like we’re doing with our one-year trip around the world.
It allows us to redraw ourselves in our own way, at our own speed, according to our needs and according to what is required for my family’s wellbeing and happiness. And most of all, to stop racking our brains with things that we can let go of, because “it’s already good enough like that.”
“SEE, THERE’S WORSE THAN US”
And to help you stop feeling guilty, to make you feel good, or simply to put a smile on your face by telling yourself “see, there’s worse than us” ? #Haha, here are examples of what we do on our round-the-world trip with our young kids “or how to do the opposite of what is well seen to do with kids.”
So, here is my list of “it’s OK to” things that we do while travelling the world, but that wouldn’t be very well seen in Québec.
- Wear the same clothes 2 or 3 … or even 4 days in a row, whether they’re stained or not – if “it still smells good,” it’s okay ?;
- Not shower every day;
- Have a dinner of peanuts, apples and chips because we’re tired, we don’t want to/can’t cook or simply because that’s what we feel like eating ?;
- Get the kids to bed very often after 10 p.m., because we’re enjoying life, our evening and simply being together;
- Not have a sacred daily/nighttime/mealtime routine;
- Make the kids sleep on the floor/on chair cushions because there aren’t enough beds;
- That the kids aren’t in car seats, because that’s how it works in that country;
- That the kids’ seatbelts are simply not fastened (like everyone else’s by the way) because that’s how it works in that country;
- Let the kids eat their meal with their fingers (you know, in certain countries, that’s just the way they eat);
- Forget to brush the kids’ teeth;
- Put everyone to sleep in the same bedroom or even in the same bed #CoSleepPower;
- Promise surprises or candies in exchange for having a good behaviour (just to make sure that the activity we have planned goes well 😀 #Guilty #RoundTheWorldTricks);
- That my 2-year-old still has a pacifier and his blanky to comfort himself;
And sooooo many more! Haha!
The goal of this blog post is to make you smile and stop feeling guilty about things from your everyday life with your kids that can stress you out when they aren’t done the way the cultural norm requires them to be.
Tell yourself that, very often, rules and customs change from one country to another.
So next time you’re stressed about something, you have the right to cut corners and to copy a little bit the old saying: “it’s 5 p.m. somewhere in the world” ?… And to tell yourself, “it’s probably OK that way somewhere in the world.”
That being said, #Cheers ladies! ?
And if you feel like it, share with us your “it’s OK to” that you apply in your everyday life!