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Monday, July 25, 2011

ADSL's questions, pt 5

And finally...A Daft Scots Lass asks, "Whats your most challenging part of being a daddy?"

That's an excellent question! This allows me to answer in many layers, such as early days, crawlng/exploring, safety issues, maintaining discipline, sibling rivalry, etc.

The early days - I worried constantly about the girls not breathing anymore. Yeah, I was aware of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) and I was afraid that I would not be able to know when they were having problems. I never forgot one night when my younger daughter (about 8 months old) was in bed with us, sandwiched in for her safety. While sleeping, I started to become aware of the rocking motion sensation. I woke up and I freaked out when I saw why...my daughter's face was covered by our bed sheet and she was moving her head back and forth to try to breathe better. She was starting to suffocate and I woke up in time. I didn't sleep again that night.

Crawling/exploring/safety issues - I live in a two-story house, so the bane of my existence was the stairs. I've had near heart-attack moments from not being able to find them, only to discover they were UPSTAIRS. Incredible that they never had an accident on the stairs! Once they learned how to operate the doors, I had to post warning signs on the doors to remind the visitors to close and lock the doors behind them. I also worried that they inherited my intense nature of curiousity. Yes, I child-proofed the house, but... You know the saying, "Curiousity killed the cat"? Well, my girls are still alive. ;)

Maintaing discipline - this was made harder once the girls realized they could ask me for permission after being denied by their mother. How was I supposed to know she had said "No" already? I did try asking, "What did your mother say?" and they would lie, of course. Now, we tell each other what the decision was so they can't manipulate us...well, mostly me. ;) As for maintaining discipline, we make sure to be consistent and follow through with our warnings. They know we will warn them just once and second time will result in a time-out.

Sibling rivalry - I coined the term "Little Sibling Syndrome" after seeing a friend's youngest son constantly fight for his portions or rights or turns. I have noticed that he would go into the LSS mode even if he didn't have to fight for it at all. Since I don't want that in my younger daughter, I have repeatedly cautioned my older daughter about LSS. I have warned her that she must share things with her sister or include her in play...and guess what? Because my older daughter has exluded or refused to share with her sister, my younger daughter doesn't like to share out of fear that she will not get back whatever it was. Sighs.

Personality clashes - my older daughter is just like me, right down to the shape and look of the fingernails and how I walk. My younger daughter is just like her mother, willful and stubborn. Drives me CRAZY that I not only have to deal with the stubborn daughter, but the stubborn mother too. However, nothing frustrates me more than my "younger self"...she lets her fears spiral out of control. She's afraid of deep water/drowning and she has jumped into a spring (that is at least 30 feet deep) from a dock 10 feet high when I held her hand and jumped with her...and she has yet to jump from a 3 feet high diving board...at our public pool populated by lifeguards...solo.

Anyone else got questions for me? I would be happy to answer them.

7 comments:

Mynx said...

Sounds like you have had exactly the same challenges as the rest of us with parenting. I didn't even have a two story house to have a child injure himself falling down a step so well done to survive stairs.

DCHY said...

Mynx - you could say that. I just couldn't hear them cry so I had to rely on "disturbances in the force" to know what was going on. Maybe I should've included that. Hmm.

Garden of Egan said...

So interesting. Some of your parenting woes are like any other. My kids would ask their dad for something out of earshot from me. Me not knowing the answer would say yes. Or if I asked what dad said ...they would lie too.

You definitely have a challenge in the kid safety, hearing them, finding them mode though.

I imagine when they are teens.....they will really keep you on your toes.

DCHY said...

GoE - I think it's more the boys who'll fear me when the girls hit their teens... ;)

Copyboy said...

Yeah, not being a father yet, those fears have intensified for me. Especially those first couple! Don't even want to say 'em out loud.

Sandra said...

I find these question/answer posts so interesting. It's stuff a "hearing" person would never think about right. When my children were babies, if I wanted to check on them, I would turn the monitor on and listen, but I guess even something that simply poses more of a challenge. You would have to physically creep into the room and look for the rising and falling of their little chests.

DCHY said...

Copyboy - as long as you don't serve your kids or let them drink Baby White Russians...you'll be fine ;)

Sandra - you have totally hit it on the head with the technology not being useful. I used to creep up to their cribs and if I couldn't see their chests move, I'd place my hand on their chests. Thank you for recognizing that.