We all like to think we live in an area where our neighbours genuinely care about each other, will pitch in to help out whenever needed without that wanting of something in return, and where we feel safe to let the kids retreat to their bedrooms to play with their friends with the doors closed. This is what life is like these days raising children right? .......... well, at least it used to be!
I suppose that now would be a good time for me to make my obvious disclosure that this is a generalization - I am sure some of you out there are in a great environment with support from neighbours & friends, but these days, peoples opinions on parenting and what is acceptable behaviour seem to somehow differ drastically from household to household and I feel that somewhere along the line we have lost our way when it comes to the basics of parenting. Now, granted that I am not a qualified therapist or have an army of children of my own, I don't think it takes a rocket scientist to sit back and wonder whatever happened to the good old fashioned values that were drilled into us at a young age - things like the following
Respect - Respect for other people, respect for yourself, and very importantly, RESPECT FOR AUTHORITY! I am absolutely disgusted about how much disrespect we see these days for teachers, parents, and especially police officers! And, if our kids have little or no respect for themselves, how can we expect them to have respect for anybody else?
Manners - It actually amazes me that I am even putting this in here because it just seems to me to be a complete no brainer. We should be teaching our kids manners right from day dot. Some of the first words we teach our kids are the 'ta, please and thank-you's' before they are even stringing sentences together. And yes, like most things while they are growing up, they do occasionally forget their manners at times, but it is up to us as parents to remind them and make sure they stay on track.
Kindness & Empathy + Giving & Sharing - I have put these all together because I truely believe these are behaviours that we need to be consciously demonstrating to our kids through our own actions. It is true what they say that it is amazing what kids pick up on - and we all know that actions speak louder than words!
Appreciation - We find it a fine line between lucky & spoilt, and this is where I think it is important to show some emphasis on appreciation. We try to let our kids experience as much as possible in life but are also trying to teach them how lucky they are to be able to do all the things they do, and have all the things they have. With our kids still being young we sometimes struggle with this fine line, and quite often wonder if we are doing it right, but I think that if we are getting the point across about them realizing & appreciating what they do have, then we must be on the right track.
Now, I'm not saying that my children are perfect all the time, and I'm not saying that my beliefs in parenting issues are better than others, but like everyone with YOUNG children (and some with older) we need to take this parenting job seriously and make sure we stay on top of the game! Basic parenting doesn't stop when your kids start school, leave school, or even leave home. You are a parent for life, and no matter how old your kids are, it is your duty to approach them with any issues you see arising. At what stage do we sit back, look around at our society today, and wonder what has changed so much that this way of life, and kids outlandish disrespectful behaviour seems to be becoming accepted as the norm. These points I have listed are just the same as what I was taught and behaviour that was expected of me growing up - AND in all my friends/neighbours households that i went to play at. If we stepped out of line, we were pulled back in accordingly. Im not saying its easy - kids are kids - they will constantly push the boundries. I just wish it was like the good old days where everybody had the same values, respect and time for each other. How can we get it back to days like that? These days people are so busy and pre-occupied with everything going on their own lives that they either don't notice if anyone around them needs help or is struggling. and alot of them are spending their time trying to portray that they have it all sorted and all their shit together all the time that they can't approach anybody if they need help or support because they think of it as admitting defeat. My goals are to break down these barriers between woman & mums and just put nothing but my real experiences and honesty out there to help empower woman and especially mums that the struggles they have or the 'shaking your head at your kids' moments are all ok and normal.
Think of me as your on-line village to help you, or as that friendly neighbour you need to sit down and have the coffee with every so often. I have kids of my own and know how it feels sometimes. Have a think about it and let me know what you think.xx
Mike and I made the decision last year to move to a different city. This idea was always in our '5 year plan' and after discussing it with the boys, and an amazing family holiday to our destination, we agreed that we didn't really know why we were waiting and decided to bring the move forward - by 4 1/2 years!!
6 months later (and a few visits to find somewhere to live) we have now moved in to our awesome new home in Queenstown, New Zealand.
We drove all our worldly possessions down in a truck over 3 days while my mum looked after the boys. Then the boys flew down and finally get to see their new home! We had tried to include them in our decisions as much as possible so they had seen the new house & their bedrooms through photos, but I was excited to pick them up and show them in person.
While Mike was busy doing the 3 days drive returning the moving truck back to Auckland, I was trying to sort out the boys furniture in their bedrooms and getting the kitchen unpacked & sorted so there could be a little normality for them. The fun thing is is that our family cat 'Pebbles' was on the same flight down with them too so they got to experience the new house together!
Moving our family to a different city where we know no-one wasn't an easy decision to make, but with the lifestyle changes & opportunities and adventures available here for us all we were and are confident that we are going to have an amazing time.
I am so grateful that being able to be a mum working from home allows me to do exciting/adventurous things like this as I am not stuck in an office job that ties me down to any one destination. Such a nice feeling to challenge ourselves, face the fear of uncertainty and do it anyway. Especially when we know its providing such a better life for our kids.
DONT FEAR CHANGE, EMBRACE IT!
- Anthony J. D'Angelo