Monday, 2 March 2015

Inspired By a Three and a Half Year Old God Daughter

After watching 20 episodes of The Return of Superman (OMG, did I really spend 43.5 hours watching a Korean show?!), I can't help but go through the same emotional roller coaster with the parents. They crack up, I crack up, They calm down, they calm down. They choke up, I choke up. They feel beaten down, I feel beaten down. They light up, I light up. They get fed up, I get fed up. I told you it's an emotional roller coaster!

I have a number of close friends who have become parents in recent years and I can just imagine it's them on the telly feeding, discipling, bathing, teaching, worrying and playing with their kids. And since I'm god-mum to two adorable girls now, the show tugs at my heart that much more.

Now, the best part about the show is that I feel very inspired to take care of a kid on my own for a few hours. I see these dads taking care of their kids, without the mums, and they all behave like fish out of water. I have always said that I'm good with kids but I need to clarify that I meant I'm good with playing with kids. I can entertain kids for a good amount of time but if I need to take care of them (read: ensuring they stay fed and alive), I wonder how good I'll be at that.

My opportunity came to put myself to the test arrived when I met Ying and Chantel for lunch last Saturday. Joey, Ying, Chantel and I try to meet at least once a month so the two god-mums (Joey and I) can watch Chantel grow up. You know the saying "Kids grow up so fast"? I swear it's a genius who came up with that line! Chantel is three and a half years old now, and she really is like a little adult with a mind of her own. I don't wish for time to stop and for her to stop growing but I wished it'll go slower.

Ying decided that she'll go for a facial and leave Chantel in my care for 3 hours. Yes, 3 hours may seem like nothing for some. But you go ahead and ask any parent how long does 3 hours feels like with his or her 3-year old, I'd bet the answer you'd get is "It's like an eternity but longer". In a good way, of course. Haha.

Anyhow, Chantel and I started our bonding time by having ice cream! Yes, that's one guaranteed way to have a kid almost love you immediately. Yes, ice cream! When we are done with filling our tummies with yummy ice creamy (yes, that's how any adult would speak when they hang out with a kid), we proceeded to window-shop around the mall. BUT not before acceding to Chantel's request of putting a glossy pink lip balm from a Frozen tube. Frozen is the other secret weapon nowadays to win a girl's heart. Give a young girl anything with images of Elsa, Anna or Olaf, and you'll be her favourite person of the day. But this post is not about me giving you on how to become a young kid's best friend. It's about me bribing my god-daughter with material needs for love in return. Just kidding!

After 3 hours of window shopping with Chantel, I have learnt a few things.

1. A kid has a different vantage point from an adult and one shouldn't assume a kid can see all the danger in front of them. Even if the danger is IN FRONT of them!
2. Have faith in your kid that he and she is smart is enough to know how to step on and off an escalator.
3. You don't expect to follow someone's order just because you're given an order, so you should get off your high horse and negotiate with the kid on what you are asking them to do. That includes the amount of ice cream he or she can have and the number of times she (or he) can sing Let It Go.
4. One should mind their p's and q's, if one wants to be a good role model for a kid. Kids learn by imitation.
5. Girls will forever be girls. Give them a mirror and they will be entertained to no end.

These are not life lessons but lessons that I feel very personal about. The joy from parenting (faux-parenting, in my case) is really immeasurable and no words can explain the satisfaction you get when you gain the trust and love from a kid. I guess this is the same emotions that keep the dads on The Return of Superman going...

When the going gets tough, the tough gets going. I cannot wait to spend another eternity with Chantel sometime again soon! :)

P/S: Oh, I have never been to Korea because I always thought the cuisine comprises too much vegetable components with every meal and everyone knows how I feel about veggies... The different sights and sounds I saw on the show showed me a different side of Korea I didn't realised existed! Now, Korea's definitely on the list of places I want to visit. Well, after USA, UK, France, Iceland and Cuba this year!

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