So on the back of last week’s post about 10 things children of our generation will take for granted… – I loved hearing your nostalgic stories and it made realise there were so many more things I could have written about!
And so, we are now over half way through the month of July and it is quite a sad week for me this week. Firstly, my little boy had his last ever day at nursery yesterday, between my two children, I have been taking the children to that same nursery for the past 6 years, so it was a sad day really – end of an era! Special shout to you guys (I know some of you read this!) – you have all done a fab job looking after my two! Secondly, my children are going on holiday with their Mummy for the next 11 days, so I will really miss the kiddiwinks for this time.
With all of this going on, I thought it would be a good idea to focus on the positives and that is why I wanted this list, to be on 10 reasons why being a parent makes me happy, I was also tagged by Naomi’s world to take part in the ‘ten happy things tag’ – so it all fits in quite nicely, so let’s get into this:
1 – An endless supply of unconditional love
A couple of months ago, I was chatting to a friend of mine at work, whose wife was due to give birth to their first child and he was asking me what I remember about my two when they were babies. What I said at the time, I would definitely repeat again if asked the same question in the future, as it really resonated with me. My response was, “it’s strange, it can take you weeks, months or even years to forge a relationship or love someone and call them a friend or partner, but when your own child is born, at that very moment, you have all of this love to give suddenly”. It is a very hard emotion to describe when writing, but I think most parents would agree with me – there really is nothing quite like it, a phenomenal experience.
I would say that I am a very affectionate person, so I enjoy nothing more than getting my fix of kisses and cuddles off my two and that makes me very happy indeed, long may that continue! Plus, my cuddles and kisses (along with every other parent I am sure) are always magic for that little bump or graze our children get – but it always puts a smile back on their little faces.
2 – I get to eat Haribo regularly
The Haribo advert’s cracks me up, “Kids and grown-ups love it so, the happy world of Haribo”, not to mention the children’s voices in the adult bodies! It is so true though and I bloody love them! In fact, I would go as far as saying, anything I open for the kids, be it a packet of crisps, a chocolate bar or even a piece of fruit, a strong urge of ‘I’ve got to try this’ comes over me, much to their dislike! It’s lucky for me, that the ‘Dad body’ is apparently ‘in’!
I remember when I was a little boy, I caught my Mum scoffing a load of my Malteasers – so clearly this trait is either hereditary or it is inherently built into all parents, that they have to ‘try’ things first! I remember she felt so guilty, she went out the next day and got me a new box! (Actually, that will be a good story for me to tell the kids – see point 7!)
3 – The knowledge of a child
The knowledge of a child never ceases to amaze me, they both tell me things I never knew or if I did know it, I don’t remember learning it until I was in secondary school or something!
My daughter seems to absorb information constantly since going to school. I recently took the kids to London, as at the time, my daughter was learning all about London in class. As I am from the South originally, I thought it would be a fun trip to show them all of the usual tourist hot-spots. We arrived in Westminister and said to her “Look there’s Big Ben”, she then replied, “Daddy, that’s not Big Ben, that is called Elizabeth Tower, the bell inside is called Big Ben!” Cue Daddy going on google quickly, sure enough she was right!
I also enjoy reading with the kids and noticed at school, Connie gets sent home a mixture of educational books and fiction books. I remember earlier this year, reading a factual book about castles. I remember thinking at the time, it can’t be that enjoyable for a child to read this, although it was a welcome break from Biff, Chip and Kipper! So get this (geek alert!)…castle staircases were built in a clockwise fashion, so that when they were being attacked, those defending it would be running down the stairs and have the swords in their right hands giving them a greater range of movement due to the design of the staircase, putting them at an advantage to those coming up, who would have to (by default) have the swords in their left hand (usually their weaker hand) in order to give them that similar range of movement! On a recent trip to a National Trust site, I had to share this knowledge with my Dad and someone over heard me explaining – and I could tell they were equally as impressed!!
4 – Enjoying the successes
The school report, the race at sports day, the random person in a shop telling you how well-behaved your child is – the list really is endless. There are so many successes we witness as parents, often on a daily basis. Each and every time a sense of pride comes over you, doesn’t it? I don’t think until our children become parents, will they truly ever understand the reason we make such a fuss when they swim without armbands for the first time or shoot a target over with a toy gun! Maybe, I am just over enthusiastic!
(What a crack shot…love this video!)
5 – Their humour and imagination
Humour is an interesting concept, I am the kind of person that can laugh at myself, but also find it amusing when I see someone bang their head or fall over – I know at times I shouldn’t but that makes it all the more funnier! My two, seem to have inherited this and their jokes that they tell, or the stories they tell me about things that have happened during the day, often have us all in stitches.
My two love nothing more than looking with me on my phone at videos I have taken of them when they were younger and we always end up having a good giggle about something they’ve said or done in the past.
A child’s imagination is amazing, I think as we get older, what we learn about, see and read actually suppresses our imagination and that is why a child’s imagination is so magical. A few of you have asked me since my post on Keeping the fairy magic alive…! if the communications are still going back and forth between Connie and ‘our fairy’ (called Jane), quite simply “Yes they are!” this is a part of me I will really miss when Connie gets older, but for now it makes me so happy – literally last night she saw the latest response and her little face lit up, it makes me smile as she is so excited that she has a fairy of her own!
6 – The gestures our children make
I have mentioned this before, children don’t work or have money – so what they can give us, is limited. I always feel so happy when they give me a nice picture or make me a card – for no special reason, other than they just can!
Again, I have said this previously, but the children have put stickers on my wallet and my notepad for work and I love them being there! It makes me smile whenever I see them there!
7 – The stories I tell
When I was growing up, I used to love hearing stories about when my Father was younger, the mischief and trouble he got into, I would ask him what his parents (my Grandparents) were like, all sorts. My two love hearing stories about me when I was a child, they find it so amusing and they will bring it up at the most random of times, but I still always find myself laughing with them, even when I tell them the same story for the 189th time – I must try to think of some new material!
8 – A sense of achievement and the big kid in me comes out…
If you had met me when I was in my early 20’s and asked me the question, “What does happiness look like?” I would have answered “To be happily married with children”, well one out of two isn’t bad! Fundamentally, my children are the reason why I get up everyday and go to work, I want to provide for them and give them the best possible start in life.
The other huge advantage of being a parent, is that I get to act like a child at times too! I love playing on Joseph’s nerf gun, playing hungry hippos with them or even hide and seek!
9 – Best friends for life
I would like to think that I am very close to my parents. Although, I don’t see them that much, we talk a lot on Facetime, we email and text too. I speak to my Dad about the practical things and advice I may need for life’s situations and my Mum for when I need a chat or feel like I need to offload.
My point is this, over the years I guess my relationship with my parents has changed and evolved significantly and that comes with growing up, which is natural. I hope in time my two will not only view me as their Father but also a best friend for life too.
(Best friends for life!)
10 – My blog – Singledaddydaycare
So if I wasn’t a parent, I wouldn’t be writing this – fact! I have only been doing this since April and it really does make me happy. The comments and interaction I have with some of you on Facebook in particular, really makes it all worthwhile. By doing this, I have met some really lovely and interesting people, be it other parents or bloggers – some people I would call friends for sure. So, a big Thank You from me – you’ll know who you are.
So now all that leaves me to do is to tag these other fellow Dad Blogger’s so that they can take part in the 10 things that make them happy, to spread the happiness:
Luke from Hux Life
Dan from Dans the Word
Michael from This real life Dad
Ryan from Dadsapp
If you enjoyed reading this, then if you missed last week’s post – you can find it here 10 things children of our generation will take for granted…