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Whose decision is it anyway??

We've had an interesting morning. One that made me think and hopefully, talk the talk and walk the walk.

I'm on a bit of a health kick. We are going on holidays (a cruise to New Zealand!!) in a month. I've been running, but I want to lose a few kilos before we go. We've been eating better, but I also am trying to do at least 30 minutes of exercise a day. 3 days of running, some swimming, some cycling, some strength/resistance/stretching, some walking.

Diamond Princess Cruise
Us in a few weeks!
So, this morning, I thought I might swim. We didn't go last week, and even though it's school holidays, it shouldn't be too crowded. Now, I like to exercise in the morning - it's done and I don't put it aside for other things.

"So, come on kids - get off the computers, ipods, and don't put that DVD in - we're going swimming!'

This upset Video Boy. He was all set to snuggle into the couch and watch the Yogi Bear DVD we got on special yesterday.

Well, we can watch that this afternoon after we've been for a swim, I suggested.

"OK.."   Sulk, sulk, pout, went Video Boy.

"OMG!" I though to myself (and other unprintable things). "Why is this always so freaking hard?? It's just a swim!"

But then I stopped. OK, so I had a plan of what I wanted to achieve today. The way I wanted it. But obviously, so did Video Boy. I went to him and asked him to explain how he was feeling. At first he didn't want to talk.

"It's OK, let's swim."  But I wanted him to really tell me what he was thinking and feeling, without being afraid of my reaction.

"I guess I'm kind of annoyed." Frustrated. He had a plan for the day and it wasn't panning out.

And so, I thought - do I really have to swim in the AM? So I suggested he watch the movie and we swim in the afternoon - "would that be OK?" Big smiles.

It doesn't mean his needs/wants are more important than mine, but mine aren't more important than his either. I have plenty of other stuff to get on with (washing, ironing, fixing the front door) and I can still get my exercise in. He still wanted to go swimming - just not right now.

Some things are more difficult to negotiate (paid work), but this morning we made some progress with our relationship. He told me how he is feeling. I listened. We can find a way to make both our days work. I told him my wants were not more important than his ("really, mum?"). And it's a win-win. I'm learning!

The relationship is more important
than anything else!


  1. What a beautiful world this world will be when more parents listen to their children.

    Good on you for getting in the daily exercise - I've been so slack lately. How exciting to go on a cruise! Hope you have a great time.

  2. Well done you Ingi!
    Isn't it hard to slow down sometimes and listen to someone else's plan? Let alone make room for their plan before yours? Well, it is hard for me anyhow!
    I think part of the "habit" of mama's plan reigning supreme is the time pressure of cramming in all of the things we are trying to get done for/with our kids.
    I am trying to chill too - love school holidays for this.

  3. Catching up from being on vacation :).

    How great this post is ! Give yourself a big pat on the back momma. Doesn't it feel good to have eye opening moments :).

  4. It was a bit of an eye-opening moment - for both of us! I find holidays are even worse for cramming things in - I have a big mental "to do" list of all the things I would like to get done, without worrying about school work or being available to help the kids. So I tend to get a bit more "reigning supreme" during the holidays - but that's not really fair (at least, not all the time!).

  5. Catching up from being on vacation :).

    How great this post is ! Give yourself a big pat on the back momma. Doesn't it feel good to have eye opening moments :).

  6. What a great moment it is, when you realise you've chosen the path as a mum where everyone feels listened to, valued, safe, supported. I call those my Golden Moments, where I look back and go, "Oh, yay. I did that one well!" I love love love times like this, and I'm so happy for you guys. Sounds like a very sweet win-win for you both.

    In the year and a half that I've been truly embracing our life learning path, I've found the reigning supreme mama getting quieter and quieter. Sometimes she shows up and after she's had her say (do you like how I'm talking about myself in the third person? Like it's not really me? Clever, huh), well we (me included) all look at her and go, "Um, that was kind of unnecessary. And maybe you want to reconsider that tone?" Then we laugh. And I apologise.

    Ah, those days. Those are NOT my golden moments! :)

    I'm excited for your cruise! And so impressed by all the swimming. I can't wait to get brave enough to do my laps again. I am hopeless in winter—it's as though I'm being asked to actually crack the ice before plunging in. And yes, we have plenty of warm indoor pools! If you were closer, I'd go with you guys, and it would be so much fun :)

  7. Yeah Helena - it's nice to have those Golden Moments! And you really are clever with your words. And you're welcome to come swimming with us anytime (pool is warm - 30 degrees! My kind of temperature).

    And do you know, I've been thinking about that morning. And so much of what upset Video Boy was that (for whatver reason: gifted/adhd tendencies) he doesn't like "the plan" changing for no good reason without warning. If I can bear that in mind, we might have a few less wobbly moments!


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