A couple of months ago I wrote a blog entitled Tips from the inside, where I gave you all some inside knowledge that i’d gathered over the past few years of parenthood.
So I decided this week that i’d bring you a few more tips and insights. Now bear in mind that these are my thoughts and in no way am I attempting to write a rule book on parenting. As you all know there are hundreds of books and guides of ‘How to be the worlds most tremendous, monumental, philosophical, fun-tastic parent‘. So just to reassure you, this isn’t one of them. I’m writing this as a father who never read one of the a fore mentioned books, I learnt the basics and then just improvised.
1 . Don’t be afraid of the school run.
When your child reaches school age they are thrown in head first, they have to make friends with strangers, they have to study a new environment, its a very scary situation to encounter. Parents have to face the same exact situation but on the outside, at the school gate. You will meet people all in the same situation, so please don’t be afraid to talk to each other and maybe, just maybe you might make friends. When Bobby started at his school, we were just as nervous as he was but making small talk with total strangers will soon turn into more, and believe it or not you have something in common with these ‘strangers’ – You’re parents.
2. Kids get hurt, don’t panic!
In my experience, one of the most common reactions to the sight of blood is panic, Even more so when it’s your own child who is injured. All I can say is DON’T! Kids look up to and mimic a lot of things you will do as a parent, it’s your job to lead, protect, and educate. When I say this, I do not mean ignore the kid, I mean if your child has fallen over smashed their head on the floor and has a small cut or graze, do not over react, take charge, use a calming voice, tell them it’s okay, talk about something else whilst you administer first aid and send them on their way. Panicking will only make it worse. Obviously if its a serious injury the same still applies but consult a medical professional.
3. Don’t be embarrassed to play.
You should always take time to play with your children, play time helps their imagination grow, and subsequently helps them learn. I have found that playing toys at home can get a little tedious so when ever we are out and about we try and have a little fun, it may be counting red cars on the motorway, or singing down the street. One thing I’ve learnt has been to not be embarrassed to play, no matter whose watching. On many occasion me and Bobby can be spotted having a superhero battle down our local High Street, or chasing mummy around a department store. At first you may feel like a fool, but when your child is giggling uncontrollably on the floor of the perfume department it makes it all worth it.
4. Remember, children have ears too.
This is one tip that every parent should know and if you do not, then I’m sure a situation will arise where you become all too aware of them. Whether its an impromptu swear word, or a reference to something you and their mummy were discussing when you thought they were asleep, they will almost certainly of heard it. However this will only become apparent at the most awkward of times. So please remember this before you say something you might later regret.
5. If you’re cold, your children are too.
As I’m writing this in the Great British winter I thought I’d conclude with this one (my Australian readers will have to forgive me for a moment). When you’re getting ready to go out give yourself a mental check list, (Keys, wallet, phone..) I do this every time I head out and it really does work. Do you do this for your children as well, hat, scarf, gloves, toys, food etc. There’s nothing worse than getting to your destination and realising that you’ve forgotten a coat or a hat and it’s -2 and raining hard! By all means get your self ready first, but please don’t forget about the little ones. After all they should be your priority.
As I mentioned at the top of this post you can check out more tips and insights by checking out Tips from the inside.