I don’t normally feel nervous my children and especially not the baby who isn’t old enough to actually do anything yet! But today I felt a pang of emotion as I dropped off my daughter at a holiday workshop. She was so excited about doing the drama workshop and in her mind must have built up all sorts of things in her mind about how it would be. I hope that the reality was just as exciting. As I dropped her off I could see she was a little unsure of herself as all children are when they first meet but the person in charge was very welcoming and introduced her to some new children straightaway. Before I knew it I was out the door back in my car. Throughout the day I’ve been thinking about it and I’m now on the way to see her final performance they put together for the parents.
I guess the thing with parent nerves is that, just like with enemies, you should never show your fear.
I imagine that many children feel nervous about doing things and it might be compounded even more when their parents feel nervous for them. I remember when I went to Cub Scout camp first time only about 20 miles away from home, but I thought that was the end of the world and I was really homesick for parts of it.
The thing that really tipped me over the edge as a young boy was a note my mum put in my bag saying how much she would miss me.
It read, “love you and miss you lots of hope you have a good time mum X”. I can see what she was trying to do but it wasn’t very helpful. I didn’t descend into floods of tears and I didn’t make a fuss, but I spent a good part of that camp wishing I was at home. .
Sometimes as parents we have to hide our fears and just let our children get on with it.
They are far more resilient than we are and don’t find it hard to make friends and play alongside others. So the key lesson here let your children explore new things even if it feels a bit heart wrenching. Now I better get back inside and watch the performance!