Parenting

How I Sound to Myself vs. How I Sound to Everyone Else When I Talk About My Little Angel

(AP Photo/Kevin Reece)

We all do it. We love our kids so much and think they are the most spectacular little people in the world. That’s a good thing—it means that we’re doing our jobs as parents. So when we tell others about our sons and daughters, it is only natural to brag a little here and there. I have found, however, that I need to check myself from time to time. There are moments when boasting about your little one is absolutely and totally warranted. (“My son pitched his first Little League game! My daughter got her yellow belt in karate!”) But sometimes, stories about normal development (or worse, bodily functions) find themselves in the same ballpark as a perfect SAT score.

I suspect that we can’t hear ourselves when we do it. I suspect that we perhaps need to take a step back and listen more when we speak. Sure, being proud is not just a good thing — it’s important. But can we at least make an effort to avoid being so annoying? Here’s what I’m talking about:

How I sound to myself:

I think my son might be musically inclined. He is showing signs of understanding how music works, and I was surprised to hear that he can actually carry a melody at his age.

How I sound to everyone else:

My son is so impressive. He loves his shakers, and toy xylophone and whenever music is playing, he bops his head to the beat. Right on the beat every time! And he even claps his hands to ask that we sing “When You’re Happy and You Know It.” I can’t even tell you how smart he is. I can’t stand it.

How I think I sound:

My baby is learning new words so quickly! I didn’t know it was normal for kids to pick up language so easily, but I’m so proud of her progress.

How I actually sound to other people:

Just the other day we pointed to the fan and said, “Jake, look, that’s a fan!” And do you know what? Only three minutes later, we asked him where the fan was, and he pointed to it. He does that with everything. Isn’t he brilliant?!

How I wish I sounded:

I know that all babies are beautiful. My little guy is no exception. I’m biased, of course. He’s just so adorable I want to eat him up.

The unfortunate reality:

How handsome he is! He’s got these big, brown eyes and beautiful lips. He is the perfect combination of my husband and me. And you know, we’re not too shabby looking. He is just gorgeous. Probably one of the cutest kids you’ll ever see, really. I think he should be a baby model, don’t you?

The way it sounds in my head:

My child is doing so well in daycare. The teachers tell us that he is learning more and more every day.

The way I probably sound to the rest of the world:

Do you know that he can put the circle shaped puzzle piece in the circle hole?? And he can click himself into his high chair? He does it himself! I really think he’s going to be an engineer. I said to my husband “He is going to make so much money as an engineer and take care of us when we’re old!”

And do you know that my little man’s poop is just the cutest thing?! It actually smells like flowers. No joke. Just the cutest, sweetest-smelling poo you’ll ever see. I change him, and I ask my husband if someone just brought a fresh bouquet of roses into the room. Can you believe it?

He is the perfect little person. I can’t believe how my husband and I hit the lottery with him! He is the smartest thing since sliced bread. (I don’t even know what that means! But he is!) He is perfect. I have no doubt that he’ll be President one day, and that he’ll probably cure cancer and win the Nobel Prize while he’s at it. He’s just too amazing not to! SHEER PERFECTION.

But on a serious note, my little guy, who is 16 months old, is the sweetest thing. He makes eyes and smiles at everyone. I really think he’s going to be a huge success when he’s older. Especially considering how smart he is…!