Recently I taught my little guy how to jump off a swing and I was so proud of his bravery that I filmed it and shared it on social media. This post was received with mixed comments by other which ranged from wow you are a super mumma to oh my gosh this is dangerous, why would you do that! My response being he is a child, he is a fit active little boy so why would I not? My son and I have an incredible bond and he follows my lead. He watches how I do something, I teach him and then its his turn to try. He knew I would catch him and I know my son well enough to know his capabilities.
Recently we celebrated his 5th birthday and I reflected on all that he has achieved in his lifetime so far – he is a well travelled boy, having been round the world 6 times, he can swim, play rugby, run and climb. He regularly attends a martial arts class, he has ridden roller coaster rides, he learnt how to ride a bike without stabilisers when he was 4. I’ve taken him swinging through tree tops, sent him down zip wires and taken him 200ft underground. He’s been on jetboats, driven around the Top Gear track by a professional sports car driver and been on cable cars up mountains.
I believe life is about having adventures and making incredible memories with those you love. This attitude clearly has rubbed off on my son as I have encouraged him to try anything and everything. When he was a baby I taught him how to climb out of his cot properly as he was going to do it anyway so I may as well teach him the right way. Of course I am conscious of his safety at all times yet I refuse to bubble wrap him and tell him he is not capable of doing something. I will always encourage him in the right way as then I know if he does fall without me present then he can land and look after himself. If I teach him to be strong and confident now at a young age, this gives me confidence for his future and ability to look after himself. This is the role of a parent I feel, to set your child up to live a life where they are willing to try, where they are willing to push through a little fear to experience the excitement of achieving new heights.
Seeing my little guy’s face light up when he tries something new and pushes through to do something he didn’t think possible is an incredible feeling. I love teaching him this life lesson and know it will set him up for hurdles ahead in all aspects of life.
I am also aware that these early teachings could well come back to bite me when he decides to be a thrill seeking adrenalin junkie base jumping warrior!! But you know what at least I know I’ve been successful in teaching him to follow his passion and live life to the fullest.