Kids can be defiant when it comes to trying something new. Be it healthy food, potty training or even the slightest change in routine. There are a great many things that Dylan still needs persuading of the merits of, but he’s started to turn a corner of late and we’ve had a couple more breakthroughs too.
The first relates to the smallest room – nobody wants to dwell on that so I won’t, but he finally seems to have accepted that availing himself of the facilities may well be infinitely more enjoyable than peeing himself. Hurrah!
His reward chart is now getting filled up with stars and we’re having to order the books we’ve promised him in advance. Great news. The second is much more fun to talk about. Although it also had him excitedly shouting “Weeeeee!”
Yep, he finally had a go on a slide. We were at my parents’ house for Sunday lunch and, despite being October, it was scorching.
As there’s a recreation ground down the road from their house, we decided to take the boys for a post-prandial play in the vague hope that they’d be sufficiently knackered afterwards and go to sleep at a sane hour.
This normally means Xander fearlessly having a go on everything/attempting pitch invasions on the Sunday League games being played on the adjoining field and Dylan volunteering to guard the pushchair, determined that he wouldn’t enjoy the rides on offer. But not this time.
He asked to have a go on a swing, so we obliged. He didn’t like it so, thinking that was that, I lifted him out and put him down. He wandered straight over to a little slide that Xander was busy trying to tiptoe up and had a go on it. Just like that.
Then we tried to get him to go on the big slide. We fully expected him to say no, but he agreed that he’d have a go if Kate went with him. He enjoyed it. Hurrah!
After a few times of them doing this, I volunteered – well, Kate may have been getting bored of it or something. It was definitely nothing to do with wanting a go myself. Oh no.
So we went down the slide together once and, when he gleefully shouted “again!” I went back up the ladder with him. Only this time I did something probably a bit deceptive; I sat down behind him as if ready to go, but gave him a friendly shove instead. He loved it. Phew!
After that, there was no stopping him and the only battle of wills that occurred was the one about going home afterwards. It just goes to show that parenting is sometimes about playing a waiting game and, on other occasions, you’ve just got to give your kids a push in the right direction.
Now to approach the eternally thorny issue of eating something other than sausages and fish fingers…