The first time I left Small with a stranger he wailed and moaned and cussed. Well, why wouldn’t he? I would have wailed and moaned and cussed if someone had left Small with me.
Small also kicked up a fuss but I didn’t despair. I tried to view it as a good thing: if he had been quite happy to be left with a stranger, what would that have said about me.
Whilst the stranger and Small were wailing and moaning and cussing it was difficult to leave. I made the mistake of going back and trying to comfort them but it only made matters worse. In the end I realised that I had to be cold and detached. I had to walk away.
I didn’t walk very far. I tortured myself and waited outside, hidden from sight. What I discovered was that within a couple of minutes the fickle duo had shut up and were quite happy in each other’s company. All of my anguish had been for nothing.
Thereafter, each time Small was left the wailing and moaning and cussing became less, until it disappears altogether. That is not always the case though: Small 3 continued the routine for a very long time. This is possibly because by that stage, out of necessity, I had returned to work part time and he had to be left with a minder, one day a week, from a very young age. Although it was painful to leave him it did indicate to us that having one of us at home full time, whilst we could afford it, had been the right thing to do.
Strangely, as Smalls turn into Bigs they are more likely to wail and moan and cuss if you stick around and embarrass them by being alive.
Not so much a parenting guide full of advice, more the reality of parenting kids and being a house husband and father, written by a stay at home dad to three children.
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