When I was a younger mummy to the older kids (who are now 24,22 and 20), it was all about the competition between parents. If your child was not the first to walk, talk or speak french, then your child was labelled as 'slow' or you were frowned upon as a parent who couldn't be bothered to teach your kid. I did get caught up in this and I will be the first one to put my hands up to say I was a snob when it came to schools and my oldest daughter went to school, but by the time my second daughter went to the grammar school and hated, that I realised that it isn't down to the parents to choose where and what their kids do. It is down to the child to be happy - screw what the mummy brigade think.
When Tilly was born, I was determined that I would never measure my child's acheivements with another parent. Maybe it was because I was an older parent or maybe because I was so tired and really couldn't be arsed! When I went to baby groups or joined in to threads on social media, and I would see or hear proud mums saying crap like ''My freddie can play Mozart on the piano, and he is only 10 months old'' These days I just think 'F*** off with your bragging!'
Kids are all different and I let Tilly do her own thing at her own rate, she didn't even pick up a pencil to learn to draw until she went to school. So she was very behind in that department, but I wasn't worried because our babies go to school far too young anyway. And since that time she has gone on to win a colouring competition. Now I have walls full of her paintings
As much as I tried not to measure how well my child was doing along other children, it was difficult because a friend told me that Tilly was slow and she should have been riding a bike since she was 4 years old, because her child did - this friend is no longer my friend! but the words stuck in my head. Tilly had a scooter and she would whizz around on that and try to do her versions of stunts. I was happy with her on the scooter but the words from the friend stuck in my head. As she got older, I worried more that she couldn't ride a bike.
But at the weekend - this happened!
I posted my proud video on Facebook saying that she was no longer the only 6 year old that couldn't ride a bike, to see my friends commenting that their child hadn't learned to ride a bike until they were older than Tilly. So it just goes to show that sometimes mums brag and it can have a knock on effect that can stay with a person for a long time, its how you can make a parent feel incompetent and crap at what they are doing. I am so proud of my little girl, she had the determination to learn to ride her bike and she went out, practised and practised until she could start the bike off on her own. I am so proud that she had determination to do something and it has given her so much confidence in herself. She has got so much satisfaction from a second hand bike that I got for £8 from our local Braderie at the weekend. Now there is no stopping her!