Monthly Archives

August 2016

Are you sure you want a child?

August 22, 2016
child

The products you buy in stores can be returned if you’re not satisfied with them, but you can’t return the kids once you have them. From the moment you get pregnant until your child comes of age (What am I talking about? Even longer than that!), everything in your life changes. You’ll have to forget about many of your habits and give up many small or big pleasures.

My life is now filled with joy and I wouldn’t change it or go back in time even if I could. However, for all of you who wish to become parents and have no idea what it’s actually like (I had no idea either), I’d like to point to some real life situations, just in case…

  • Your child wakes you up in the middle of the night or very early in the morning and tries to tell you something important although you’re asleep or pretending to be asleep.
  • Your child screams to the top of his/her voice at 6 a.m. (he/she wants to wear summer clothes even though it’s winter, insists on watching a cartoon, doesn’t want to go to the kindergarten), and when you try to explain calmly that this is not an option and that screaming won’t help, the screaming only gets louder.
  • Watching movies in the evening is like watching TV series: you can keep your eyes open for about 45 minutes tops before you’re knocked out.
  • Do you have any idea how much putting your child through school will cost you??
  • You listen to your friends who don’t have children blissfully planning their trips to interesting places you can only dream about.
  • Your friends tell you about what happened at a party where they stayed until dawn…
  • Your kid has added new decorations to your favourite dress with a felt tip pen.

… let your imagination run wild; the list of challenges that await you is practically endless.

But: when my daughter runs towards me and wraps her arms around my knees, nothing else matters. When she grins with her face stiffened and says: this is my happy face, all is forgiven and forgotten.

 

 

Mens sana in corpore sano

August 10, 2016
mens sana

Let’s deal with some more serious matters.

Much has been written about how important sports are for the children and all parents must have entertained the idea of turning their kids into top athletes at some point. One never knows, right? Being good at sports might be a way for them to get scholarships and be admitted into the best universities. I admit I liked the idea very much. Love for sports is something that develops at the youngest age.
When my daughter was 3, I enrolled her in the so-called preschool gym: a bunch of kids, under the watchful eye of their instructor, tried to practice new skills on the mats and modified equipment while their excited parents peeped through the door left ajar (we weren’t allowed into the gym). My daughter’s interest in gymnastics for toddlers lasted for about three lessons. During the fourth, she just gave up after fifteen minutes. She still asks me from time to time to take her to the gym, but I’m not convinced that she’s truly interested and that she would be prepared to really commit to practicing gymnastics at the age of five.

Let’s move on. All girls love ballet and dream about being ballerinas when they grow up. My daughter also joined the group of little girls in tutus, who walk on their toes, with their chins high up and mysterious half-smiles on their faces.   

She’s still taking ballet lessons, but after I saw her performance at the school revue, I’m afraid pursuing ballet dancing as her career is far from reality.

Tennis… Well, maybe, some day. In fact, at the first and only tennis lesson she’s ever had, she amused her friends by carrying tennis balls on the racket and shouting: Breakfast! Who’d like some eggs?

And finally, we get to swimming! In the swimming pool, I’m proud to say, my little girl is like a trout in the rapids. She enjoys belly flopping into the pool (my guess is that she actually attempts to dive head first, but doesn’t seem to get it right) and she mostly keeps her head under water because, to her, swimming equals diving. She also persist in disobeying her coach and mostly just waits for him to get distracted so that she can climb the ladders and jump into the water again.

Seriously, though, we seem to have managed to come up with a win-win solution. She’s found the sport she enjoys, and I’m happy because swimming is the corner stone of physical development. And in the end, you know: a healthy mind in a healthy body!