Instant Parenting

Aunty Katrina and Missy

My sister Katrina is a great Mum. Like me she has five children, although she had them one at a time. She is one of those people who is great at thinking on her feet, a great asset for instant parenting. You know the type of parenting where you are in a situation with a child and have no idea what you will do next. My sister is great at it.

For example.

This week she had a mutiny on her hands. My neice, The Pocket Rocket, staged it. Ironically, The Pocket Rocket is most like Katrina, inheriting her strong personality and leadership potential. If my parents weren’t devout Christians they would be thanking Karma many times since the Pocket Rocket’s birth as they have witnessed Katrina and Pocket Rocket have multitudes of confrontations.

The Pocket Rocket

One night this week, Katrina was going out to Toastmasters. The Pocket Rocket had rallied the troops. They blocked the doorway. The Pocket Rocket made her case and had encouraged all siblings to also voice their concerns in a verbal onslaught. She even co-ordinated the 1 year old to participate with high pitch wailing. Their premise that it wasn’t fair for Mummy to go to Toastmasters. She should stay home.

Once Katrina had calmed the situation down so that she did not have to compete with the rabble, she sat her children down.

“Mummy understands that you want me home tonight, and other nights, so we can have time being a family. It’s important for us to have time as a family and I’m proud that you want to spend time with one another. I agree it’s very hard to spend time as a family because life is so busy, and I know I’m so busy. So, I’m going to make this commitment to you that next week I will not go to Toastmasters, I’ll stay at home with you. We’ll also make sure that we have this precious family time by cancelling music, ballet and soccer. This way we will have plenty of time to spend together.” When there was an outcry that this was unfair, she calmly explained that it is also good to have a chance to do things we enjoy, and going to Toastmasters was her equivalent music, ballet and soccer. Very quickly there was a mutual agreement for each person to continue in their chosen activities.

Brilliance. I hope I can remember those lines should the opportunity arise.

Have you had any moments of brilliance when you require instant parenting? (Instant parenting = those parenting moments when you know you have to respond in an instant with no prior warning or preparation.)

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