Monday, September 20, 2010

Marina's View

One of the reasons my husband and I were so hesitant to become parents is because we have no clue about what it takes to raise a child into a healthy, functioning adult.

Sure, we look around all the time and find startling examples of what not to do and how not to handle certain situations, but it's easy to judge when you're not the one with the screaming infant. And depending on who you ask, everyone will tell you something different about what works and what doesn't.

But regardless of anyone else's views, the one issue my husband and I were adamant about was that Marina would not be allowed to watch television for the first two years of her life. If she needs some sort of entertainment, then that's what books and toys and playmates are for.

Should be an easy enough goal to accomplish, right?

Sure, if you live in a house with no television. Ahem.

The problem here is that, when I'm home alone with her during the day, I occasionally turn on the TV with the hopes of remembering what it's like in the real world. You know, outside these four walls that sometimes feel like a prison where I spend most of my time these days.

And although I never actually park Marina directly in front of the television, she's inevitably figured it out. As in, "Hey! What's that loud, bright, blinking box over there? Surely it was purchased with the sole purpose of entertaining ME. You know, like the bouncy chair and the play mat and the tummy-time surf board and....."

So what seems to be taking place more often these days is that, when the television is on and Marina is being fed, she'll PHYSICALLY TURN HER HEAD so that she can see the TV.

Yep, just the other week we enjoyed an episode of Mantracker together.

I keep telling myself that this has got to stop. I'm either going to do all her feedings in her bedroom on the rocking chair we purchased (yes, for her), or I'm simply going to turn off the TV. Seriously.

The last thing I want is for my bad habits to become Marina's bad habits. I hate that I sometimes have the television turned on even if I'm not watching it. Really, what's the point? Why waste electricity just to have it mindlessly blasting in the background for no one to see?

No one... except for Marina, that is.

The one talk show I do enjoy watching is Live with Regis and Kelly, but once that's over, The View begins. I've never been a fan of The View, but my hands are usually full with my daughter now and I just don't get the chance to change the channel (or turn it off) right away.

Which of course means that Marina is now watching The View, even if I'm not paying it any attention.
Just this morning the ladies were having a heated debate, talking all at once and yelling over one another -- this is something I hate, because I can't understand what they're saying anyway...... but Marina loved it.

Elisabeth Hasselbeck's perfect face came on screen, and Marina was smitten. She stopped eating and began smiling at the television..... and as the ladies' discussion became heated once again, Marina gleefully added her two cents by squeaking back at the TV screen.

Who needs toys, right?

Oy. That's it, the child needs to be cut off. No more watching television in front of her!

Except for maybe just Mantracker.

And Wipeout.

But that's it!


  1. Hey. Enough with the criticism about t.v.'s. They were my babysitter when I was a kid!

    Oh. Wait. Seeing how I turned out, perhaps it's a good thing to restrict her viewing. LOL.

    In all seriousness, tv used properly can help her grow in her understanding of language. The trick is to find the appropriate show. Such as the Young and the Restless. Oh. Wait. I mean Seseme Street. Yah that's it. Seseme Street. The trick is being able to tolerate it.

    But Jo...don't make her watch the crap that is The View. Blah.

  2. I totally know what you mean about TV being the babysitter! (When I was a kid, I used to read the TV Guide more often than any other age-appropriate reading material. Not that there's anything wrong with that. Ahem.)

    But if we can keep her entertained with educational television shows (read: PBS), then she should be okay.

    (Please note that The View does not air on PBS..... and that should have been my first clue that it was evil.)