The first thing to bringing back the joy in parenting is to meet your own emotional needs as a parent. You can only give what you have. Take the time to replenish yourself. Do what you enjoy doing with yourself, nurture the relationship with your spouse or with your partner (spend time alone without the kids!). One thing that brings the misery and that takes away the joy in parenting is losing yourself in the name of parenting.
Sometimes as a parent you may look at all the sacrifices that you make for your kids; be it time, finances and other resources and that may make you feel down compared to those who do not have parental responsibilities and have more resources to themselves.
It is at this point that one appreciates what their sacrifices are doing for their children; they are getting an education, have a roof over their head, they are growing and maturing into people with their own skills, discovering the world with you guiding and nurturing them and that should give a parent the motivation to work harder.
Sometimes go easy on yourself and children. These days as a parent looks around to all the activities that ones children should be engaging in one may feel the pressure. More and more we are trying to structure lives for our children, every single activity and minute under our watch as parents. Sometimes it is okay to let them be children, free spirited, let them engage in unstructured play and social interactions with other children and discover for themselves and you as a parent have time for yourself. Trying to be involved in every single activity that your child(ren) engage in- guiding and controlling may leave a parent and even the children feeling stressed out.
The role of a parent is for life. The key to being happy is to enjoy every age, every milestone of your child. Consider the baby years, consider the kindergarten and nursery school years consider the teenage years, even when your children are adults you still remain a parent. If we as parents find the joy in raising another human being, nurturing and being there for another human being – our kids too will enjoy and love life. Parenting should not be taken as a chore rather it is a labour in love.
Here are some 25 fun ideas to have with your children that we have compiled for you, charity begins at home and the blog has begun with some experiences that one can have in my home city; Nairobi.
A Game Drive at the Nairobi National Park
A visit to the National Museum
A nature walk at the Karura Forest
Declutter your home
Home beauty treatments
Good old hop scotch
Board games e.g. Monopoly, Chess
Do It Yourself Arts and Crafts
Go to the movies
Watch movies at home together
Going to events together
Developing a home garden together
Washing the car
Telephone calls or Skype with family and friends
Hide and seek
Lie down and watch the clouds, make fun out of the shapes
Cook or bake
Dance and listen to music together
Can you think of other ideas that we may have left out of how to have fun with ones kids?
March 2019 – My heart beats
© Kwambie Nyambane,