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Hartselle Enquirer

Daughter’s 19th birthday brings back memories

By Staff
Michelle Blaylock, Mom's Corner
We celebrated a milestone in the Blaylock home this weekend. My oldest child turned 19. Yea! I couldn’t help but reminisce just a bit. There were so many things in motherhood for which I wasn’t prepared.
I really thought I had the bases covered. I knew how to “handle” a baby. I had babysat for years and had six siblings. I knew how to change diapers, take temperatures, feed, rock, love, teach and discipline them (I thought anyway). What more could you possibly need to know? Um, how about everything else?
I thought I would share with you some of the things I discovered I didn’t know about raising children. One of my first lessons came right after we brought our daughter home. I knew about “spitting up.” I didn’t know about infantile reflex. Babies with this condition don’t just “spit up.” They projectile vomit, at least mine did. I quickly learned that not only did I need several changes of clothes for my baby; I needed at least one change of clothes for me and my husband!
When my daughter’s first real illness came along, it was a nasty ear infection. It was to be the first of many ear infections. I discovered very quickly that those “great tasting” flavored medications were apparently not “great tasting” to my child. It was also at this time I found out how strong a little 25 pound baby can be when fighting not to take the “great tasting” medication. I had to learn how to hold down her little arms while holding her squirming little body and making her open her mouth. I also learned very fast that just because the medicine made it into her mouth it didn’t necessarily mean that she swallowed it. Swallowing the medicine became the next fight.
I had one of my first lessons in electronics when my wonderful two-year-old “fed” the VCR several of her magnetic letters. I would have left it until my husband got home, but unfortunately, he was on a week-long business trip. The tape that was in the VCR was a rental (of course) and needed to be returned or we would have had a huge overdue fine. In desperation, I learned how to take apart and put back together the VCR. Since then I have learned how to take apart and put back together (that’s usually the tough part) many toys and electrical things.
I had also envisioned these wonderful sessions when we would sit down together and she would excitedly learn new skills. We did have some of those times. I also discovered she had a stubborn streak a mile wide. When she was learning her colors she called everything “blue.” I was patiently trying to teach her. I would ask a color and no matter what it was she would say “blue.” I would gently reply, “No, sweetheart, it’s red (or whatever.)” After a couple months of this, her Daddy and I were getting very frustrated. One Saturday morning we were lying in bed dozing, our little angel was sitting between us playing with her multi-color links. Her Daddy hears her saying, “Red, yellow, green, blue, red, yellow, green, blue.” He just barely opens his eyes and sees her saying the correct color with the correct link! He suddenly opens his eyes and says, “Gotcha!” She looks like a deer caught in the headlights and begins to say, “Blue, blue, blue, blue.” John says, “No way girl! You’re caught!” I realized teaching this child was going to be a little challenging.
Since the birth of that baby girl 19 years ago, I’ve learned the most important thing about motherhood, is that you never stop learning. I have six children, not counting all the foster children we had in Kentucky, each one has taught me something new; sometimes pleasantly, almost always unexpectedly.
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