I am thankful that Mr Loco and I talked in-depth about raising Baby Loco. I am sure there will be many blog posts about ideas we had in regards to parenting and how those conversations played into choices I make for Baby Loco. There are so many areas that spill into parenting including research, politics, feminism, food choices, word choices., sharing of love of learning, sharing a love for the outdoors, the importance of learning to swim well, learning to use the metric system… and so much more. I told you we talked in-depth!
Just as a general parenting overview, our goal in raising Baby Loco was pretty simple. We hoped she would be a critical thinker. We hoped she would find happiness in whatever fashion worked for her. We hoped that she would find humor in life and live each moment full and big. What kind of parents did we want to be? Our parenting ideas and styles were very similar. We wanted to always keep in mind what our end goal was. It is so easy to get caught up in the daily grind, to become obsessed with getting your baby to sleep through the night, following your time schedule or in little power struggles. Don’t sweat the small stuff was our game plan. I think we were pretty laid back first time parents. We knew our lives were forever changed and we were cool with riding that roller coaster. We enjoy research and making choices based on facts in all aspects of our life, parenting would be no different. Mr Loco was a hands-on and involved dad. He loved being a dad so much. He loved wearing Baby Loco. He loved all the money we saved using cloth diapers. He loved snuggling with Baby Loco as she slept in our bed. He had the funniest one-sided conversations with Baby Loco. He was an amazing dad. We were definitely in this parenting game together.
Mr Loco was excited about doing science related activities and fun extras with Baby Loco. He was ready to do science experiments and teach Baby Loco all sorts of cool things. Mr Loco was always looking for interesting experiences for Baby Loco. He loved to take her to the Children’s Museum. He found classes that were available at the local zoo. Mr Loco had this on his calendar since Baby Loco was around 1-year-old. He was counting down until she was old enough to attend class. He enjoyed the zoo and liked finding things he could do with Baby Loco. Baby Loco was about 2 weeks shy of meeting the age requirement for the April class. He planned on taking her anyway. When Mr Loco passed away, I knew that I would attend these classes with Baby Loco in his place.
We went today to honor Mr Loco’s plans. We will continue to go each month they host an event that Baby Loco is eligible to attend and as long as she is interested in going. This month the themed animal was cows. It was my first time at the zoo. I had avoided several play dates that met at the zoo because we were waiting until Mr Loco had enough stamina to walk the zoo. Since he did not get the chance, I wanted this class to be our first trek to the zoo. I dressed Baby Loco in the Rush t-shirt that he dad bought her and off we went. I wasn’t sure how I would feel but seeing Baby Loco have a great time made it a wonderful day.
These programs would have been right up Mr Loco’s alley. I could just hear him quoting facts about cows to Baby Loco. He would have walked with her on his shoulders and been the proudest daddy at the zoo. Instead there I was, a very proud mom holding back her tears when thinking about what might have been.
I am hoping to do two things, parent Baby Loco in a way that stays true to all of our conversations and does Mr Loco justice and to keep Mr Loco’s memory alive for Baby Loco. I want her to know who her dad was, what kind of guy he was, what kind of jokes he made. I want her to have a sense of both of her parents. That means going to these classes and talking about how they were Mr Loco’s idea, tell Baby Loco stories he told about the zoo, share little tidbits making Daddy more real. In addition to these classes I am trying to put pieces in place to really keep his memory alive. There are pictures all over the house. Baby Loco likes to look at pictures of her Daddy. I have made an album of her first year with Daddy. It is huge and full of stories. I have one more album of Baby and Mr Loco to make covering the 4 months from her first birthday to Mr Loco’s death. I think that album will come with a lot of tears as we felt like we were on the upswing and heading into a great year. I am trying to jot down stories as I think of them. I am hoping people email me stories and memories so I can share them with Baby Loco.
If you have great ways to remember loved ones, I am open to suggestions. I need to go to bed now. I am running a race for Mr Loco tomorrow morning…..in just a few hours I need to get up and go. Instead I am up looking at photos and blogging. It has been a tough week. Here’s to the race tomorrow being a wonderful Team Loco event. I think I will go snuggle that sweet baby.