With their 2 kiddos each (ranging from 18 months to 11 yo), La Petite Creme founders Fanny and Cecile have gone through their fair share of motherhood struggles. In their new Instagram Live series "Moms talk with a French accent", they are teaming up with NY-based pediatrician and holistic health Coach, Dr Varisa Perlman to go over some universal parenting milestones and how the American society approaches it. Their international background will bring a different flair onto your parenting journey and hopefully shed a different light on them.
In today's FIRST EVER episode, Cecile and Dr Perlman talk about parenting as a "beautiful chaos" and provide a different perspective on what it means to be a good parent.
(full text transcript below the video)
Moms Talk with Dr Varisa Perlman [episode #1]
Cecile (00:00:00) - Hi everyone, this is Cécile from La Petite Crème. Hello, hello.
Cecile (00:00:09) - Good morning.
Cecile (00:00:15) - Hi Harley.
Cecile (00:00:19) - Hello, hello.
Cecile (00:00:23) - Hi everyone. All of you who are joining, it's our first live that we scheduled. So we're excited to see that we have few people here. So let's wait little bit. I hope everybody is doing well this morning. Just waving at everyone. Hello, hello. I'm going to wait a few more minutes before I to our co-host. Good morning. Hello everyone. So as you can tell, it's only me, Cécile, today. Unfortunately, Fanny's kids are not feeling too well. So yesterday she had one sick child and today she has two sick children.
Cecile (00:01:14) - So she's going to try to join us in the chat, but she's probably between coughing medication and, you know, rinsing a nose or like dealing with fever. So we send a lot of good vibes, you know, for that. Hello everyone. So let me, now that we yeah, have that mommies live with you. I think most of us can relate here with sick kiddos. So let me try something and I'm going to to our co- host here.
Cecile (00:01:53) - Hi, hello. Everybody's joining. Let's see if my invite is working.
Cecile (00:02:05) - Again, that's our first live here, so please bear with us.
Cecile (00:02:09) - We're going to be talking of more interesting stuff in a minute as soon as I can get everybody here.
Cecile (00:02:19) - And again, I'm Cécile from La Petite Crème. You may be able to get us from the accents.
Cecile (00:02:28) - And I'm going to invite our friend Dr. Varisa Perlman to join and co-host with me today. So at least you have two moms talking instead of just me. I could talk forever about parenthood and motherhood, but my single experience might not be as appealing as having two insights. So, I'm not sure if you can get my invites.
Cecile (00:02:56) - Oh, thank you.
Cecile (00:03:00) - You saw us at Prego Expo.
Cecile (00:03:01) - Yay.
Cecile (00:03:01) - We love Prego Expo.
Cecile (00:03:01) - Yes.
Cecile (00:03:02) - We did our last one in Los Angeles last weekend, last one of the year, but we are super excited to say that we're going to be part of the Prego Expo tour next year again. So, tell us where you are located, where you want us to be, and we'll come see you. So, we'll get to put some more of that shiny layer on everybody's hand again. So, apparently we're having technical difficulties. Surprising.
Cecile (00:03:34) - Every time we do something, there's technical difficulties. So, let's see if I can get a hold of Varisa and see what's going on. Otherwise, I can just grab one of you and have you co-host with me. How about that? That's scary.
Cecile (00:03:49) - I wouldn't do that. So, while we try to figure this out let me tell you what I was planning, what we were planning to do. I feel like everybody kind of left me by myself, so I'm going to have to fill the space today. One a thing that we wanted to talk about today is transition, because if there is one a thing that is common to all of parents.
Cecile (00:04:14) - Oh, here we are.
Cecile (00:04:16) - Look at that.
Cecile (00:04:16) - Look at that.
Cecile (00:04:17) - Varisa is coming.
Cecile (00:04:18) - There you go.
Cecile (00:04:21) - Let's see.
Cecile (00:04:21) - Let's see what we have.
Cecile (00:04:24) - Here we go.
Cecile (00:04:25) - Hi.
Cecile (00:04:25) - Hi.
Cecile (00:04:28) - Oh, you're sideways.
Cecile (00:04:30) - Here we go.
Cecile (00:04:32) - Hello, hello.
Cecile (00:04:32) - I don't know if everybody can hear you, but I cannot, so let's see. Thank you for joining. Here we go. Hi, now we can hear you. People are joining. Hi, Lisa, welcome. So, Varisa, now we can hear you. Hi. So, let me introduce you. You cannot hear me? We can do sign language. I can hear you, but you cannot hear me. But if you talk, we hear you, so careful what you're saying. So, Dr. Varisa Perlman is a pediatrician.
Cecile (00:05:24) - She, for the little story, she was very instrumental in how La Petite Crème came together, because she used to be based in Miami, and she was the pediatrician that followed my kids when they were babies. And as we were using our traditional French lotion on our babies, one the day I go to my, the one that seemed like we go forever to pediatrician when you have a baby, and then one of those recurring appointments, she opened the diaper, and she's like, you know what? At that age, if they have rash, it's pretty common. Don't be surprised.
Cecile (00:05:58) - And she opened that diaper, and she's like, okay, you have to tell me. What's going on with those French kids that never seem to have rash? Like every kid at that age has rash, and I can't understand why everybody in the French community seems to be consistent in not having diaper rash. And she's like, probably the food or like your croissant or whatever.
Cecile (00:06:21) - So we joked about it, but I brought up the lotion that I was using back then and told her that we didn't the baby a baby wipes and put lotion in front of her, and she was like, oh, my goodness, like that makes so much sense. It's surprising that we don't know about this here.
Cecile (00:06:38) - So that's how , you know, the little a thing got into my head, and then I went back to Fanny, who was my kids' nanny back then, and we sat together, and we're like, okay, there is something there that we need to share with other parents who may also be struggling with an apparently very common diaper rash issue. And so that's how we got started. So that's why Dr. Perlman has been kind of looking up for us and just being supporting our project and talking to parents about it and completely organically. She never asked for anything.
Cecile (00:07:13) - She just thought it was a very nice concept, and we reconnected recently and thought that we could share some of that ever-sharing experience of parenthood to other parents who might be interested in knowing how other culture countries' parents do it, because sometimes we feel a little intimidated by things we don't know, right, and maybe having somebody else sharing what they do could be the answer to, hi, you're here again.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:07:42) - I was desperately like, do I text my children now? Do I text them in this? And I was like, no, I will soldier through.
Cecile (00:07:54) - Perfect. Well, you're here now. You missed all the intro and all the nice a thing I had to say about you.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:08:01) - Please finish. That's okay.
Cecile (00:08:03) - That's okay.
Cecile (00:08:04) - I was just telling everybody how you were instrumental in telling us that we had something when it came to French diapering and how we did something different and we didn't know about it. So I was just pointing to the fact that you were one of the people who said, hey, that's not usual in this country where it was something very natural for us to come by. That was your the intro.
Cecile (00:08:27) - Yeah.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:08:28) - That was fantastic.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:08:29) - You know, we just are here from Miami Beach. Cecile and Fanny both live in Miami Beach, and one of the beautiful things about being there it's there are people from all over the world, and I always tell patients, I learn as much from you as you learn from me. In many many ways, when I see something is going well, not just when things are going badly, right? But when things are going well, I want to know why. Because maybe I can give some of that experience out to other people from, again, all over world.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:08:59) - So, you know, Cecile and Fanny were, are just fantastic mothers, fantastic families to work with, really thoughtful, you know, really kind and really trying to not kind of get involved in all of the crazy panic that sometimes, you know, accompanies raising children. So my conversations with them, you know, it was always such a thrill for me to hear them carrying some of what they had learned or known from being French into their childcare.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:09:41) - And there are incredible amounts of many different ways that this shows up, but it's pretty amazing when you kind of hear stories from all over the place. So La Petite Crème kind of came up as you guys were raising your children, which I think is very cool. And I love practical solutions. I try really hard to not encourage people to become hyped up and surrounded by all kinds of random tchotchkes or things, right, that they sell at these stores, try to make it as simple as possible because, you know, you get so busy. It's frantic.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:10:25) - And, you know, being, I always wanted people to be ahead of something, not behind it. And I think that so much of our American world in terms of how it is, we only treat kind of disease based. We don't really talk about prevention. And to see people other cultures just kind of doing it a little differently, just doing a little bit differently is really refreshing. And I think, you know, they have an incredible concept behind them.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:10:57) - But to broaden the idea, as we've kind of reconnected, you know, there are many ways that we all come from different cultures, and we all do, right?
Cecile (00:11:10) - And it's, it's, and culture is wider than just the country, because sometimes you may, you may think that you're very close to everybody around you because you live in the same city. Or, as you say, we're lucky to live Miami, where it is very diverse, but you may find that it's not diverse around you in terms of nationality and, and bringing, but culture is different from one family to the next.
Cecile (00:11:36) - The culture of like, the family dynamic, the food that you grew up with, whether you live in a big city, a small town, or whether you've been raised in the countryside, countryside, or whether, so culture, learning from other people is available with the person next door. It doesn't necessarily have to be like across an ocean type of outlook. And it's important to keep your mind open to the fact that there is something to learn from one another, no matter what, even if it's something that doesn't fit with what you do.
Cecile (00:12:08) - And knowing that it's right in there makes you actually even be grateful for what you have being like, oh, at least I don't have that kind of thing to deal with. And sometimes it also boosts you.
Cecile (00:12:18) - I feel like as a parent, when you realize like all the things that you don't have to deal with all the things that you actually have a handle on is so much nicer than always focusing on what you don't have a handle on because there's so much things you don't control that there's something you're a good at and that you're on top of and all things that you're like, oh, at least, you know, this I'm mastering with or without knowing. But, you know, at least it gives you that motivation to be like, okay, I'm a good at it.
Cecile (00:12:47) - Let me keep going because it's, it's tiring.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:12:51) - You know, you bring up a great point, you know, I think that the idea of developing your own point of view, your own voice is definitely an aggregate of all the different elements that you're influenced with. So it doesn't necessarily need to be an international culture, right? It can also be geographical, it can be generational, right? You know, it's that kind of thing where there is a lot of support out there. I think the thing that I always tell parents, it's a fine line, right?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:13:26) - Because while I want you to be open and listen to other people, I also don't want you to feel like there's so many voices that you can't hear yourself.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:13:34) - And I think it's that kind of balance where you're like, this is very comforting, very warming that there are several different options for me to do this. But at the end of the day, your journey, your path with your children is completely unique to your family. And the more that you pour into that, you invest that, you're going to see that your children are going to really resonate with that confidence.
Cecile (00:14:06) - And... Do you see that? Do you see that from your experience with watching families together like that, that it kind of goes across to the kids?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:14:15) - Oh, yeah.
Cecile (00:14:17) - makes me feel good because I feel like it's, no, I mean, it's true that sometimes we're wondering like how much of what we do have an impact. I think we, I would speak of personal experience. The image I think I'm projecting to my kids is a lot of like control and being on top of things and being like, but now if you're saying that that is actually showing them confidence being who they are, that makes me feel less bad about some of ...
Cecile (00:14:44) - from the temper that sometimes I show to them, which is not like super Instagram, you know, social media friendly and all of the good, you know, perfect parenting thing we see out there, so.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:14:55) - Yeah, I think there's like two words that are seemingly contradictory, but yet I think work very much in pair when you're raising children. One is fluidity, right? Being able to be fluid with the way you think about the way that you are perceiving the world, the way that you are consuming what is kind of coming towards you, because, you know, when we get stuck, right? We get stuck in our thoughts, we get stuck in like the way things are supposed to be, the way things should be. We miss the inherent kind of like lovely chaos is like what I want to say.
Cecile (00:15:30) - There are days when it's less lovely than others, but it's, okay.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:15:33) - Yeah. The lovely.
Cecile (00:15:34) - Listening, yeah.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:15:36) - Right?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:15:37) - That kind of, the lovely chaos that actually is part of raising children. It is so beautiful, right? Because it's through that chaos that you develop a human being, right? So in the end of the day, nature is not order. Nature is a little bit, it's just a little bit to a lot of chaos, right? So their chaos is there, but what you're describing actually, when you kind of, you know, work with your children, you kind of, is you're trying to set boundaries.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:16:05) - So while we can live within that chaos and we almost need to embrace it because, you know, we have to be able to kind of pivot whenever we need to with children, you know, right? I always feel like the minute things were going well, I was nervous because I knew something was around corner, that I knew that it was an illusion that I was getting deluded, right?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:16:27) - something was like under my control, right? And I got this, you know, the minute I would feel that, like, oh, I know something is coming. Let it go, let it go.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:16:36) - Why did I say that? Why did I think that? Because I knew I was just on the precipice of some other leap I would have to take, right? But boundaries, which is, there's a great book called "Blessing of a Skinny". And "Blessing of a Skinny" talks a lot about how boundaries really help us kind of create the ship around our children, right? So that they know that in the end of the day, if you can speak up to them and you can say, you know what, this is a boundary. This is not, this is acceptable, this is not acceptable, right?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:17:07) - You start to kind of literally carve out, like a carpenter, right? You're just like carving out that ship for them, right? And in the end, because kids are like, okay, wow, you know, this person means business. This lady means business.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:17:19) - Like, apparently I did something wrong. Cause they're just trying to take an information themselves, right?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:17:25) - When they kind of take that information in , it informs them on where the boundary is, how big their ship is, what their ship is gonna look like. So when you literally set them to sail, right?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:17:40) - As a parent of college kids, I am in that, set them off into sail, look at them to horizon, right? You have, right?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:17:49) - you have helped them create the right ship, right?
Cecile (00:17:54) - Wow, that's, you give me goosebumps, like hearing that. Cause it makes, no, but I think it puts everything into perspective that it's not today that count as much as the consistency of being there. And as you said, I love image of the ship because the ship is not made by one little, you know, day or one tap on the hammer that, oh, maybe it's, you can always like rework the ship.
Cecile (00:18:21) - And then, you know, I don't know all the vocabulary of carpentry, so I'm just gonna do, you know, things with my hands, but you can make it nice and polished, you know, down the road. So it's, cause sometimes we get caught into one bad day and we're like, oh my goodness, like I ruined my life just because I, you know, I yelled this one time. And the guilt comes in , which is like the one thing that comes with delivering a baby is like, oh, you get that big bag of guilt that can follow you around for the rest of your life, which is how I feel.
Cecile (00:18:48) - Like, why do I feel guilty about everything, all the things I do or I don't do? Like I woke up and like, oh, I'm just guilty. I don't know what, but it's just guilt. So it is at least my mind hearing that. I hope everybody listening is just, you know, feeling that same feeling of ease because it's coming from somebody who seems to know a thing or two about, you know, kids and parenting. Yeah.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:19:13) - You know, I always say that, like, you know, when I'm working with families, I'm literally walking with them on the path. I'm just walking with them on the journey, right? And my experience between my kids, who have also been my own journey as well, but also, you know, in the end of the day, you know, guilt and fear are poison.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:19:32) - All day, all along, I keep telling this. And I do it for myself as much, just because, you know, we all-
Cecile (00:19:42) - You're a human, yeah.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:19:43) - I gotta, if I wanna speak it, I gotta feel it. So it comes back and forth with me. So that's, I appreciate that, that helps me a lot. But, you know, guilt and fear are two things that really kind of make your ability to parent constructively and lovingly and with confidence.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:20:04) - It poisons that, it poisons that. You know, I'm not a carpenter.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:20:09) - I'm not sure why a carpenter, like, analogies are coming to my head.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:20:14) - But you know, if you've ever watched someone work with wood, it's actually really horribly difficult.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:20:20) - It is actually like, I mean, you have to like hit that that hammer, right?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:20:26) - So firmly, with such confidence, to make the right contour, right?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:20:32) - And it takes multiple, multiple takes at it.
Cecile (00:20:36) - Yeah.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:20:36) - And in the end of the day, I'm not looking to make a pretty ship for my kids. I'm not making, cause you know, life is hard, right? I don't care. I want the sturdier one. Like, I don't want one, I'm just gonna keep going with analogy, right?
Cecile (00:20:50) - That's a good point.
Cecile (00:20:52) - That's a good point because I feel like nowadays, it's a lot about beauty. Like it has to be a pretty ship. If the ship is not pretty to look at, then it's not appealing for the outside. But you're right. On the long run, who needs a pretty ship? You don't want that. It can't sustain water and waves, right? Right.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:21:08) - So if you sit there, again, just with the analogy, right?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:21:11) - With your paintbrush, right? Which is really easy, actually. It's really easy.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:21:14) - Paint the ship, right? You paint it, it's so pretty. It's so pretty. But out in the middle of a storm, that paint ain't doing crap for you, right? ... . It's not doing anything for you. You don't need that paint, right?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:21:27) - What you need to have made sure, right, is that when you were making those cuts into the wood, that they were made with confidence, right?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:21:35) - And the reason why I think I started doing a lot of the work that I do in terms of kind of health coaching, working with families, working with parents, is because I saw so many times that children are, unfortunately, for better, for worse, sponges. And if you are constantly overwhelmed with guilt and fear, you don't really seem to have the confidence, you're just hearing a bunch of voices, you're not really listening to yourself, those kids absorb that energy.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:22:07) - And if I ask most parents, would you wanna send your kid right in to world with not a lot of confidence, not really sure of who they are, you're like, no, no, no, no.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:22:16) - I want them to be sure of who they are. I want them to kind of feel confident with who they are. But it's gotta start with you. You can't just throw that at a kid and make it stick.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:22:26) - They've gotta see it in you.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:22:28) - And I always keep the analogy too.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:22:32) - I mean, like dogs, which frankly,... there's definitely a lot of feralness in teenagers and adolescents, but also with toddlers, they can smell things, they can smell the fear, they can smell the guilt.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:22:46) - And when they can smell that, you're not gonna get that far.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:22:51) - You're not gonna be as effective as you want to.
Cecile (00:22:52) - So can we state here that confident, that doesn't mean not making mistakes though. Because sometimes it feels like, we need to be assertive about who we are, we need to project that. We don't want to turn that into another set of pressure, being like, I need to be confident. Because the truth is we have no clue what we're doing. Like most of us don't. If we have a first child and then a second come along, we're like, oh, I get this. And then everything is thrown at us again. We don't know what we're doing. Second time around, third time around.
Cecile (00:23:26) - So I don't want people to think that it comes with pressure of like, you have to be confident because you know what you're doing. Just, you have to be confident to embrace the fact that you're there, you're present. You're just like into it and you're gonna make mistakes. You're gonna own up to it. You're gonna learn from it and keep the ball rolling, right?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:23:45) - I think that a phrase that I would use a lot with families that were asking me questions, questions about topics that were a little bit controversial, things that were kind of moving along and whether it be vaccines or like treatment options or all the things that are out there. I always tell people, I'm gonna tell you everything that I know as of right now, as of this moment. I can't tell you in five years, I'll give you the same answer, right? Because things change all the time. I think that with kids, they just wanna know that you're present.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:24:20) - You said it earlier, being present allows you to listen. And all that I think one person can ask of another is just to be listened to.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:24:33) - Does it mean that you're gonna do everything right? Because that's just actually going back to the chaos theory, right?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:24:39) - That's not gonna be possible, right? That's just not possible.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:24:43) - But you can at least give the best try you can at that day. At that moment, that's the best you can do, right?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:24:49) - And I think we live in a very distracted world. Again, all the voices and all of the kind of like parading of my parenthood, right? I can do this well, I'm doing this well is really very deceptive because it really, I think, takes away the magic of being a parent, right?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:25:16) - And I think that I cannot...
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:25:19) - Speak enough, and you know it is a cliche, but I mean, the times where I've messed up the most have been, have ended up, being the most joyful moments in my life, because they were incredible, pivot moments for me and I think that you have to be able to kind of embrace the chaos and and the mistakes and the joy all together in one little package.
Cecile (00:25:49) - But it's gonna happen, no matter what, no matter how prepared you are, it's gonna come to you. So you might as well just be willing to look forward and not agonize over the fact that you could have, should have, would have avoid it, you know, because if it wasn't for this mishap or this issue or this slip, it would have been another one at another point.
Cecile (00:26:10) - It's inevitable, right?
Cecile (00:26:13) - So a couple of people are commenting on the fact that you made an analogy between the dogs and the kids.
Cecile (00:26:20) - I think people are like: what?! are you saying that they're the same.
Cecile (00:26:22) - So I think you made it.
Cecile (00:26:24) - It's a primary instinct to just, you know, feel the fear.
Cecile (00:26:28) - But they're coming like: what? are you?
Cecile (00:26:29) - Are you associating a dog and a kid?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:26:32) - I think I think so. I mean, dogs are incredibly intelligent.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:26:35) - So I don't know, no shade on dogs, you know, like I mean they're actually really smart. So I'm not gonna throw shade on dogs. I think that, yeah, I might be giving a dog- you know a couple of it on this situation.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:26:48) - But, that being said, I think that there are specific stages in which instinct really takes over and I think that, again, I think toddlers and teenagers are very similar times where they are working mostly on instinct, which is kind of counterintuitive, right, you think, oh, a teenager, I should be able to talk everything out. Teenagers are full of emotion and in many ways, they're kind of starting to organize their emotions and so they live a lot on just how things feel, right? And be able to feel things.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:27:19) - So I feel like, because, you know, dogs are incredible, because their perception is so clear that in many ways it forces us to check ourselves, because I think that, again, there was an article and that was put out recently about this whole idea of kind of performative parenting.
Cecile (00:27:45) - Okay,
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:27:47) - and I think that when we really ask ourselves about what we do all day with our children, you have to ask yourself: am I doing it because, you know, someone told me to, or my neighbor said I should do this or I should do, or am I doing it because when I asked my children, or when I'm with my children and I, and I'm really asking them, what do they need right now, then I listen, and then we act on it.
Cecile (00:28:14) - And you act together as well. It's it's kind of a joined decision. I feel like sometimes when, when it's a mono decision, it's also harder for the kids. Like how many times have we been like trying to get out of the house because, okay, it's it's Tuesday morning or it's Saturday morning.
Cecile (00:28:33) - We have to do something.
Cecile (00:28:34) - It's Saturday and you're trying to like get through that door and it takes you forever because for some reason, everybody's fighting it, whether it's your, you know, your significant, although the kid, everything, the universe- is just telling you it's gonna be a painful way to get out. Then you get outside, you do something and everybody's miserable because it's not what they wanted to do and you put all that energy and pressure into "we need to have a good time!".
Cecile (00:28:56) - Let's take pictures and stuff.
Cecile (00:28:57) - And it might be one of those moment where, if you had looked at, okay, what did we need? Maybe we just needed to be relaxed and not go through that pain and just sit at home and hug.
Cecile (00:29:09) - That could have been sufficient from the kids' standpoint and from the parents' point, to be honest, because you don't, you don't like to put that, that pressure and that hard time on yourself.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:29:20) - I think I think it's funny, because I'm really glad that you kind of challenged the word confident, because I think that it is a word that has many layers and nuances to it. I think that if I could really they kind of submit, like what I mean by confident, I want you to be confident that you were present at that moment.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:29:38) - You know it's interesting because they often talk about, like prayers: right, do you pray?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:29:44) - You know, I want this outcome, I want this thing, I want this achievement right? and somewhere along the way I kind of heard- and you don't have to really even be a religious person to understand this- but you know that you should just kind of pray for the strength to take on whatever is put towards you, because sometimes you don't have the specifics right, and I think that in many ways that openness to how that day or that world is going go around is going to actually give us a better handle on how to parent best with that child.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:30:22) - Yeah, so I think that that's the part that you know, the instinctual element of dogs, I think the reason why I bring up dogs, because a lot of times, especially with toddlers and even with teenagers, we do a lot of talking, a lot of
Cecile (00:30:38) - I do that a lot. That's my favorite thing!
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:30:39) - Yes. And then you just- and you're on timeout- because you did this and you did it right- and I always kind of tell special women like stop talking, because sometimes when we talk we make things so confusing, right, and all they hear is like Charlie Brown, like Papa, Papa, but they don't really hear. They're not hearing us, right.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:30:59) - So in many times I and I did this as teenager too. So I put teenagers to a lot of times, like you said, like if you are having a moment and everything is kind of like spiraling, just shut up, shut your mouth right, open your thoughts, right. So open your empathic ability and say let me maybe be present with you.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:31:19) - You're freaking out, we're not, I'm not gonna talk you out of this. Right, you're gonna freak out, you're gonna go through it. Maybe take deep, a couple of deep breaths, just to kind of shadow.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:31:30) - Not shadow, to model, okay, right, take couple deep breaths and then calm.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:31:36) - But if you try to talk through it, you miss .
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:31:40) - The puppy doesn't understand it, right, they just don't understand it. And I've seen people- I don't, I don't have a dog myself- I've seen people with their dogs and people are so tender with their dogs, right, and when they're firm, they're firm, they can hear their voice.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:31:56) - Right, and when they are being tender, they don't even have to speak, they can just touch in a certain way. We seem to understand that, right?, with dogs, but we don't really understand that with our children. That's something.
Cecile (00:32:07) - I think, the language, language comes in as we use language- and I'm the first to do that. We use language as the way to like, show things, but maybe that's an over, overstep .
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:32:23) - I know this sounds crazy, but it's kind of the easy way out. You know, it's a lot easier to you know, no, no, you should.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:32:30) - And then pull the script of what you're supposed to say: no, no, no, right.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:32:34) - Versus like hey, I think I'm a little upset too, like, I think I'm not in a good place now too, I think I need a couple breaths, I need a timeout.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:32:43) - Like a lot of times, you know you're the one who's freaked out right? They're okay, right, you're the one who's like having a really bad day, like, so it's a lot harder for us to like, like internally, put that gaze back on to us and also you know and and say, hey, you know what I might need to take a minute, yeah, right, then just say, well, you know the discipline. People say that I should tell them three steps for them.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:33:14) - I mean, we go into this whole thing and it becomes a lot more complicated. One of the things that I think is really neat about elements that I've seen in French parenting is that there are, yes, there is some talking, obviously, but there is a lot of element of learning ways. So you that you have to kind of calm down, you have to self calm yourself.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:33:37) - You can take their children into very nice restaurants and no one's throwing anything, no, and they teach them from a very young age how to kind of like try to kind of be a part of their own, be a part of their own conversation, to be able to calm their system.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:33:54) - Indian culture does a lot of meditative work. You know there's a lot of cultures that actually recognize it. From a very young age we have the capacity to pause
Cecile (00:34:06) - It's a desire because it's it's helpful. It's helpful like
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:34:09) - it's not good to like scream and yell and be, you know, having all your emotions take you over. But again, so much of what our children , you know so much about how they act, is really just a reflection of how we are.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:34:26) - That's the best, the part that there's a great phrase- and I say it almost every day just because I think it helps me my own life as well- is that children are born the way they are, to heal family.
Cecile (00:34:38) - I remember you saying that to my family when I had, I was waiting for my second child and that stayed with me ever It's been been nine years. I still think about that a lot.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:34:50) - , it's, it's, you know, again, just to go back to that chaos versus control, right? You know, they're born with an energy that is meant for us and the things that they do to help us rise to a better person than, than we were maybe before, right? Is remarkable. You know, nothing else in your life will do this, you know, mirror on your face and sometimes it's not pretty.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:35:18) - Sometimes it's not, it's not so pretty, right? And it's important to understand that, you know, we can only learn by kind of unsurfacing like all of, all of the things that are making us impaired, you know, unable to be our best self.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:35:34) - You know? And I think that it's such an incredible opportunity. I love being a pediatrician. A lot of people will say, you know, Oh gosh, how can you a pediatrician? pediatrician? The kids are, you know, cute, but the parents are horrible.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:35:49) - And I actually say that: to me, the parents are my favorite part because I've been able to watch parents, you know, of the first year, the second year, the fifth year, 15th year, right?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:36:07) - And to watch the evolution of a person, they become a person that they never even knew they could become because in the end of the day, they have to be their children's advocate. No one else advocates for your children except for you. And even though you might be scared of something, you may be not sure. And again, like you feel like you're going to make all these mistakes. So why even try? Right?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:36:38) - You just kind of have all these doubts in your mind, you know, in the end of the day, you know, if you're fighting me, right.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:36:45) - And you're, we're having a thing, I'm not upset at you because in the end of the day, you're fighting for your kid. Right?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:36:51) - So that's pretty noble. That's kind of awesome. Right. And I do much better with parents who are fighting me for their kid than the ones who were like, I don't know, how much does he eat? What time do you go to bed? I'm not sure. Like, when you do that, I feel like I'm not sure who's taking care, what's going on, right? But in many ways, I feel like it's a matter of harnessing that, and I use the word again, harnessing that confidence, right?
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:37:17) - Harnessing the confidence that you will be present with your children as much as you can be. At every moment, you will listen as much as you can, you will create boundaries where you need to, right? You will teach them the ability to tolerate frustration. There's something called frustration tolerance, right? And being able to be, you know, tolerate that so that when they go out in the in real world and their boss says, listen, you need to change something.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:37:45) - This is not working. They say, okay, I can, I'm going to be able to do this. Or their spouse says, I'm not really happy with this, we need to change it. They are able to do that, because I always tell people that I work with my children at a very young age, because I'd rather be the person to do it for the first time than their boss by then, and it's kind of a little too late.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:38:11) - And so again, you know, boundaries, but fluidity, right, listening, being present, is all you can ask of anything in our world.
Cecile (00:38:27) - So I think that's a good wrap up sentence that you just, you know, I think carving the ship is what we're here for. That's a good one.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:38:38) - Don't just paint it. Okay, don't paint it.
Cecile (00:38:43) - Don't paint it.
Cecile (00:38:44) - Drop the paint.
Cecile (00:38:45) - Get into your carpentry kit and get that carving gun. So we'll leave it to that. I'm sure it's going to be a lot of thoughts, and we'd be happy to hear more about what everybody has to say in the chat. And it was our first time we were doing a live here at La Petite Creme. Again, Fanny is not here today. She's here back in the picture.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:39:04) - Fanny is living the lesson.
Cecile (00:39:06) - She's in the beautiful chaos.
Cecile (00:39:09) - She's living it today.
Cecile (00:39:11) - She's proof that the concept is true. So she'll be here with us. We're going to do this again in two weeks. Varisa, you'll be here with us again to talk about whatever comes up that day. And we'll try to come up with a theme. Most likely we won't stick to the theme because it's going to depend what's coming up that day. And we're going to try. We're going to try. It's going to be parenting of some kind, and then some carpentry and dogs in-between. So thank you very much, Varisa. Thank you for everybody who joined.
Cecile (00:39:42) - And we're going to open the meetup room on Google Meet so you can get that there. And then Varisa and I will stay there and talk more to you if you want to put your head on camera and we can discuss on Google Meet. Bye, everyone. Thank you. Thank you for joining, and we'll see you soon.
Dr Varisa Perlman (00:40:00) - Bye.
Cecile (00:40:01) - Bye.
Watch other episodes here: https://www.lapetitecreme.com/blogs/moms-talk-series/