Honestly, you start parenthood thinking that pregnancy and labour plus perhaps the early days are going to be the tricky bit and that once you’ve got that sussed it’s all going to be a breeze from that point on.
Or perhaps that is just me?
At no point did I realise that the older they get, the more opportunities you have to realise that you don’t have the up-to-date, covers it all edition of the parenting guide.
Take nativity plays. They should be a breeze but instead they are a minefield for the uninitiated parent.
It was Bigger’s first ever nativity play this morning and having got through the experience without embarrassing her too much I thought I should share with you my tips for surviving this annual treat.
Choose where to sit carefully
A cunning nursery will offer you the choice of some grown-up sized chairs at the back or teeny, tiny child sized chairs at the front. The uninitiated will go for the adult ones – MISTAKE! You aren’t going to be there for long enough for comfort to be a factor and if you sit near the back you won’t get to see a thing. And for heavens sake take off your coat – you’ll be jammed in like sardines and there is no room for a winter coat – in any case you’re so close together shared bodily warmth will stop you feeling the cold
Take tissues and embrace your inner softie
Nobody ever won a prize for being heroically hard hearted during a nativity play – allow yourself to have a watery-eyed moment when they bounce in, when they do their little moment in the spot light. Just make sure you have tissues and probably don’t wear any mascara – nobody wants their Mummy to resemble an emotional panda
Know what you child is before the day
We are lucky, our nursery provides the costumes (aren’t they fab! Doesn’t that make life easier) – only downside is that this can mean that you can attend the show not being entirely sure whether your child is an angel or a star. Turns out she was a star. A lovely dancing star guiding the Kings to Bethlehem.
Don’t teach them the alternative words to any carols
May seem funny at the time, won’t be funny when you then have to spend the next 3 days trying to wipe ‘Jingle Bells, Daddy Smells’ from their memory. If you are lucky they will get over-enthusiastic with the bells and chuck them across the hall so will be suitably distracted and not sing the wrong thing. Is still funny how much they are amused by the new words though!
Be unashamed taking pictures
Everyone else is so don’t worry about standing up and getting a shot of your child in their staring moment. Even better make sure you have a friend close to the front to get up close shots of your darling if you made a mistake with the seating. Grandparents will require evidence, especially if there were only 2 places available which ensured that both Grandmothers have missed out on the stage debut and are equally narked that neither you, nor your husband, felt up to letting them have your place. As if.
As it was, Bigger was brilliant – cute, adorable, almost in tune at times. It may have only been 15 minutes but it was lovely. Hope yours have been beautifully memorable too.