Today My Husband Writes the Blog - Father's Day Special August 28 2015 by Simone Denny
This week's blog is a bit of a deviation from the norm, being guest written by my husband James (from here on known as the "Nourished Hubby").
With Father's Day just around the corner Simone kindly asked if I'd like to take over the Nourishing Hub blog this week. As I sit here and write it I feel a lot of pressure - she does such an amazing job with the Nourishing Hub blog and I really don't want to drop the ball!
My inspiration for the blog is my two beautiful daughters, specifically 5 things that I have learned since having children just over 4 years ago.
5 Things I've learnt from being a Dad
1. I'm not the Dad I thought I'd be
To be honest I didn't really have a clear picture of what I'd be like, but I remembered my Dad never seeming to have an off day when I was growing up, so I naively assumed that being a Dad was something that just happened naturally, and didn't take a lot of work. The reality is that I'm always thinking of things I could have done better (or at least differently) with the girls so for me being a Dad is a constant learning process (with two very diminutive teachers!) and something I hope I'm getting better at with each passing day.
2. It's amazing what they understand (and remember!)
I usually find I speak to the girls using language that seems appropriate for a 2 and a 4 year old, but sometimes I make an effort to talk to them more like I would to an adult. It never ceases to amaze me how well they respond to this, and I’m often surprised by some nugget of “grown-up” info that gets thrown back at me long after it was first discussed. Maybe it’s just that the kids have a bit of parrot DNA in them, but I think it is nice to mix things up in our conversations with our children, even from the earliest years.
3. ... and it's amazing what they don't understand
We are lucky enough to have a child psychologist in the extended family who has given us some great insights into the way our girls think in certain situations. Our brother-in-law explained that in their earliest years children often can't really understand or articulate their emotions, so as parents we need to try to help them to understand the emotions they are feeling - naming it if it's obvious ("you're feeling frustrated by that aren't you?") so that they can get a better handle on exactly what it all means.
4. Try to see the world through your children's eyes
Related to the above. I typically look at the things that my children do through my own eyes, but find it useful to occasionally look at what they are doing (or have just done) through theirs. So when the kids throw me a curve ball, I try to avoid the default "Dad knows best" approach and instead try to see things as they are for the girls. Often I'll forget, or arrive at the "Dad knows best" conclusion anyway, but it really can make dealing with these situations a whole lot less messy. The hardest part (as always) is remembering to do it in the heat of battle!
5. (an obvious one): Savour the special moments
Normally we are all pretty time poor, and while we all love our time with our kids, I have found it especially rewarding to occasionally throw my mind forward about 40 years to the time when I am old and feeble, and my kids probably don’t want to spend all their days playing with their dad, or even want to live on the same continent as me (making me “incontinent”?!). As we have all seen with our kids growing up, time passes incredibly quickly, so I find this “urgency of enjoying the moment” helps a little to put a check on the typical distractions we face.
So savour those special moments, no matter how insignificant they seem - each one represents a unique opportunity in time, so be sure to grab it with both hands!
Thanks for indulging me this week - Simone will be back with her usual dose of inspirational news next time.
The Nourished Hubby