• 24Sep

    D- in Parenting: Must Do Better

    The fundamental problem with ‘parent blogging’ is the slippery-slope of only writing the good stuff; you risk looking like a deluded Mary Poppins fantasist, when in reality most days you wonder how anyone manages without a large wine by lunchtime. Especially when it’s nearly noon and your first coffee of the morning still sits where you left it with a cold skanky fug on top. Kids are hard and most of us are muddling at best, no matter how much we love them.

    So in the interests of balanced and honest blogging, here’s my School Report and lessons learned from some of my best Parenting Fails so far. I say ‘some’ because frankly I have more to list than the data allowance on WordPress will support. There’s only so much I can think about at a time without feeling the need to start saving now for my children’s therapy, and I need the money for wine. Bless you little darlings, should you ever read this (and I hope you do), rest assured it all stressed me out a lot more than it did you…

    Lesson One: RTFS: Read the email from the nursery school PROPERLY
    ‘Oh lovely – you’re doing a sponsored walk round the garden? Dressed up in yellow you say? Sure, no problem!’
    Except it’s ‘dressed IN yellow’ not ‘dressed UP in yellow’, so all the other little kids look like perfect angels from the sunshine section of the flaming Boden catalogue, while mine are stood there dressed up as Little Miss Sunshine complete with sandwich board style costumes. Hooray for Crap Mum! Thank God I checked the ‘no photos’ box on the registration form. (Still, better as babies than aged 11 I suppose).
    Grade: D- for Reading.

    Lesson Two: Act Your Age
    Remember that advert where the sassy mother prevents a full-blown tantrum in the shop by beating her kid to it and shocking them into silence?
    Yeah. It doesn’t work. She screamed even more. And now I look like the local basket-case and have to shop elsewhere.
    Grade: D- for copying another’s idea, badly.

    Lesson Three: You Can’t Catch a Fishy (Sick)
    As the defendant in this case I will use the ‘crying wolf’ defence, as she has said it so many times and been fine, but when your small child tells you repeatedly they have a funny tummy… probably best not feed them salmon for tea. This particular fillet was determined to return upstream and did so with ferocious velocity across the lounge and all over the sofa (fabric naturally). Of course her baby sisters were quick off the mark and we all had a lovely old time playing ‘slap the sicky sofa’. *weeps at the memory*
    Grade: D- for lateral thinking.

    Lesson Four: Preschool Cannonball
    Determined to be all proactive and not to be stuck indoors ‘just because of a little rain’, I took my then 3-year-old to the park. I thought that the great big 30ft adventure playground slide would be brilliant in a puddle suit…. turns out a wet slide turns a plastic wrapped kid into a bloomin’ rocket, and she flew down it at great speed, shot off the end and landed several feet away face down in the mud. (Admittedly kinda funny, once the screaming stopped. About three hours later. Scared but unharmed – sorry sweetheart!).
    Grade: D- for Common Sense.

    Lesson Five: Know your Children
    I have twins. They are not identical. They are not even nearly identical. Yet as babies I used to accidentally bath the same one twice, feed the same one twice, and once even gave the same one twice to the health visitor for weighing. It was only when they remarked that she had dramatically dropped in weight that I twigged. I blame the lack of sleep.
    Grade: D- for observation skills.

    Lesson Six: Ipod shuffle is for YOU, not THEM
    During a lovely dance-off with my darlings, I shot upstairs to the loo, only to hear the ipod self-select a very, VERY inappropriate song. It’s by Tenacious D and is about doing something ‘gently’. It didn’t get far in before I ran/fell down the stairs shrieking like an injured cockatoo to drown out the sound, only to traumatise them further by falling flat on my arse at the bottom of the stairs. Beautiful.
    Grade: D- for Music.

    Lesson Seven: Keep your sarcastic remarks to yourself
    First day in a new playgroup, in a church. When the Vicar comes to introduce himself and your children show off their new skill called ‘spitting’ and gob all over his neat blue shirt. Do you
    a) apologise profusely
    b) apologise and offer to clean it off, or
    c) apologise through thinly veiled laughter and try to make light of it saying “and they’re too young to even know I’m an atheist!!”

    Yeah. I am actually blushing while writing. Not my finest moment. Thankfully the vicar saw the funny side, I think. Hey-ho, I assume he’s forgiven me. I wouldn’t know – nice as the group was the kids couldn’t go back. Grade: U (ungraded) – straight to detention.

    Thank you for letting me share. I feel a bit better for that. Time for that large wine.

    Anyone with me in the naughty corner?

    JT

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    for starting a funny conversation about this subject. Follow her too.

Discussion 19 Responses

  1. September 24, 2012 at 7:42 pm

    Such a great post! Love that im not the only one who does these things!

    • September 25, 2012 at 11:41 am

      Thanks! I think we all do them really! Better to laugh than stress out – life’s too short :)

  2. September 24, 2012 at 7:48 pm

    [...] Inspired by a post by Jane, on the inadifferentvoice blog [...]

  3. September 24, 2012 at 8:15 pm

    Oh yes, often with you in the naughty corner! You have some corkers there. You are right about parenting blogging becoming a bit too sickly sweet at times, hence why I like to share all the failings! Mich x

  4. September 24, 2012 at 9:03 pm

    I get a U for English Languge: in Tescos when my boy was two, I dropped a tin on the floor and before I knew it, had sworn loudly. My son then proceeded to chant ‘shit, shit, shit’ all the way round the shop. It all turned our okay though, once I had moved house. Loved your post!

    • September 25, 2012 at 11:43 am

      Hahaha! Yeah we have a fair few “fu-crying-out-louds” in our house!

  5. September 24, 2012 at 9:18 pm

    Hmmm… no sugar on my blog! And yes, we all pull some D’s and F’s at times. I like to call it setting the bar low and leaving room for getting a Most Improved Parenting award at some point in my life.

    • September 25, 2012 at 11:44 am

      That’s a great policy! I kind of wouldn’t want to win any awards, as it just conjures up images of a newspaper byline when I do a newsworthy fail!

  6. September 25, 2012 at 9:10 am

    Oops. Several times. Ah well, none of us are perfect, and those that are can do one. Thanks for joining in to #FailFriday. Love the vicar one. I bet he’s got a good sense of humour, hopefully.

    • September 25, 2012 at 11:46 am

      I hope so too. I’m not good around religious leaders generally. Makes my tongue bleed from biting it…

  7. September 25, 2012 at 9:19 am

    I was crying laughing at your rocket child on the slide. My boys were jumping on the bef when one nosedived off, one minute he was there, the next he was gone, I couldn’t stop laughing.

    • September 25, 2012 at 11:46 am

      Haha! Yeah there’s always a point when usng the bed/sofa as a trampolene where you know if they carry on any longer someone will get hurt…

  8. September 25, 2012 at 12:32 pm

    Love this and so with you on bloggers presenting only their good side – I’m not sure that I’ve even got one! If I have, it’s very well hidden!

  9. October 8, 2012 at 9:59 pm

    i don’t have a child but this post might be useful for me in future!

  10. January 10, 2013 at 4:19 pm

    I have done the wet slide one too. In my defence we were in Wales, it was either go to the park in the rain, or stay in for 13 days…

    • January 10, 2013 at 4:24 pm

      Haha! We were also in Wales!

  11. August 26, 2013 at 10:58 pm

    [...] it is on my own blog. If this is in any way making you uncomfortable as a parent may I divert you here where I catalogued my less proud moments, one of which involved spitting and a vicar. Ying Yang and [...]

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