Jan 21, 2022
2 mins read
My youngest son is 4. He’s the one who because he is our last child, we can’t stop seeing him as the baby. He starts school next year, and I’m not sure I’m ready to see him in a school uniform – he just seems so young still. I’m sure that between now and the day he starts school, he’ll probably shock me with how much he grows (I hope!)
He shares bunkbeds with his (nearly 7 year old) sister. This works well for them. Recently, we decided to take his bed-guard off of his bunk (his was obviously the bottom bunk), because he rolls in his sleep. Now, we knew that this meant the likelihood of him rolling out of bed would be much, much greater, but it’s not a high bed at all, so the decision was made.
You can tell where this is going though, right? He rolls out of his bed a maybe 3 or so times a week. Sometimes, it wakes him up if he bumps his head or leg on the bunkbed ladder, and we’re always right there to comfort him if he’s hurt or sad. But the boy’s a ninja – more often than not, by the time we’ve jumped from the sound of the bump, sprung up the stairs to his aid, he’s back in his bed like nothing’s happened! That’s down to some strategic placement of his ginormous cuddly dinosaur toy Tom. He usually sits at the foot of his bed, but now he’s placed on the floor next to the bed, to break any potential fall. However, last week when my wife and I were watching TV downstairs, we heard an almighty crash from up above. Aside from getting the biggest fright, we both leapt up from our chairs and were with him in seconds. He’d fallen out, but was just lying on the floor crying... the one time I forgot to lay Tom by the bed. He wasn’t hurt, mostly just the fright of the harder landing, but he settled down soon after, and I proceeded to feel terrible!
I think it’s important to be honest with fellow parents about these moments. The truth is for the vast majority of us, at least I hope, that we’re actually all pretty good parents. A lot of instincts come naturally, or grow out of practice. Sometimes, these regular whoopsie moments can make you feel like the worst parent in the world, that you should have known better, or should have been more prepared. While those last 2 may be true, they don’t make you a terrible parent. Being able to be realistic about life happening, can encourage resilience in both you, and in your child. We can’t keep them in bubble wrap, but we can do what we can to protect them from real danger – beyond that, let’s try to encourage a healthy physical resilience in our kids. We’re all learning together, so don’t suffer from “bad-parent-itis".
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