Standing up for yourself

I may have alluded to it in a previous post, but the boy has no trouble standing up for himself against us. It’s other people that he seems to have trouble with, blindly doing what other little kids tell him to do and then acting extremely puzzled when we ask him why on earth he did such a monumentally daft thing.

It’s a delicate balancing act though when you’re out and about between being the protective parent and letting your kids develop and find their own way in the world. A combination of a cup of hot tea and open toed sandals made the choice for me at softplay the other day.

The boy, and by obvious extension his tomboy little sister, is extremely rumbustious when it comes to physical play. They like nothing more than hurtling down things, bouncing off of other things and climbing up stuff I’d think twice over.

When Fifi accidentally fell down the stairs last week (no harm done I should add), she bounced round the bends in the staircase on her slow-motion plummet and I half expected her to jump up and shout “again again!” at me. She didn’t but the application of a bag of sweets showed it was shock making her cry rather than broken limbs. Apparently wifey was always prone to falling down the stairs when she was little, it must be inherited.

So when it comes to soft play, both the children are often found in the over 5’s area, despite being 4 and two and three quarters respectively.

A great role model. Apparently.

I was sitting down, sipping a nice cup of tea when I heard the usual ear piercing Fifi shriek. I looked up, not unduly concerned since these shrieks can be caused by anything, from something that resembles a spider, to a lack of immediate biscuits. A bigger boy was standing menacingly over her, having taken some play balls off of her. Before I could put my tea down and get my sandals on, the boy stepped between them. standing in a stance that must have come straight from Kung Fu Panda. Legs apart and slightly bent, arm extended with a clenched fist, he shouted at the bigger boy to leave his sister alone. The bigger boy stood there slightly flummoxed. The boy was considerably smaller than the bully but looked furious. He’s always stuck up for his sister, which at times makes it very difficult to discipline her but in this instance she was very very pleased.

By this point I’d strolled over to look at them all through the rope mesh and the bigger boy thought better of trying to thump my kids with an adult watching. The tense stand off continued for a few seconds, then the bully boy turned tail and fled up the foam ramp of backing down, along to the rope bridge of humiliation The boy had won!

Afterwards, whilst munching a biscuit and drinking a well earned Fruitshoot, the boy told me “He had better kung fu than me but I scared him off.” He knew that the bigger lad could have thumped him but his instincts for protecting his little sister had proved too strong to ignore.

I’ve no idea how we’ve managed it, it’s probably down to wifey, but we seem to be doing okay on this parenting lark if this incident is anything to go by…