Many parenting manuals are telling barefaced lies, or giving the ‘ice-cream fluffy’ version of parenting. Take for example last Saturday lunchtime. I was told to go and get yummy bread, so I duly came back with fresh artisan style French stick bread, covered with sesame seeds, filled with flavour, fresh and made using skills handed down from generation to generation. Imagine my disbelief when my little girl asked “What were the bits on the bread?” “Ah ha,” I replied, “Those are sesame seeds. These give that extra crunch and flavour my favourite little girl.” “Ok Dad, but whatever they are can you scrape them off as I can’t eat them!” So I spent five minutes of my life that I will never get back scraping bread, whilst others were already eating their food. Now tell me which parenting manual mentions this?
Sometimes my kids catch me unaware like yesterday. I was in bed, safe in the knowledge no child could disturb me, so I woke up feeling fresh as a daisy with all stress lifted off of me, and as I heard the screaming downstairs I thought I was king of the world ready for anything. As I picked up a fresh pair of ‘undercrackers’ (or pants to those outside of my family,) I was not expecting two pirate figures to be inside! I had the shock of my life as I pulled them up to see two people looking in horror at the sight before them. If they were alive many, many, many years of counselling would be needed, but I fished them out and quickly realised I was already feeling stressed and had not made it outside of my bedroom.
As I got downstairs there was the usual scene of devastation, and the only way I can describe it is to imagine a stick of dynamite had exploded in the front room causing everything in the room, including the cushions, to be on the floor. As I made my way to the kitchen I managed to find my children by following the food on the floor like the story Hansel and Gretal, where I found them at the trough, or kitchen table as some may call it. As I asked my loving wife for a coffee my kids announced a disaster had happened, and my son was now crying. Anyone else would have run to my son, and mopped up the tears, but me, I simply asked “Ok, who kicked who?” My son announced that his sister had kicked him and the cereal had run out in his bowl. Yes son, they have run out, charged up the wall, up the mirror, and across the floor, in fact I could made rice crispy cakes if I wiped the walls with a wet wipe! Knowing that my stress levels were high enough, I refilled the bowls, scrubbed the coffee, and got ready for work instead.
You would think I would have taken my own advice and frisked my boots, but now the toy pirates had decided on revenge and made their way into my boots. Seriously, where was this in the parenting manual? If you are the person at work with me wondering if I need surgery on my feet as I am walking bizarrely, then don’t panic it’s just the toy pirates in my house taking revenge for the horrors they saw this morning!