I have always been a bit apathetic. I've never really had much interest in anything that involved politics, religion, sport.... I was always happy to just coast through life, not worrying about much and not having any strong opinions of my own. That was until I had children. I started to realise that everything is political; my children's schooling, healthcare, our family finances. I had to start caring about what was going on in the world as it affected almost every part of our lives.
Even my religious beliefs have been tested as children have absolutely no boundaries in their questioning. In school they are told about Adam and Eve. When they asked me about this I tried to explain the concept of Evolution while trying to be very diplomatic and saying that different people believe in different theories. Evolution is not that easy to explain to four and five year olds, but I gave it a shot. I don't think they really got it! Whether they did or not doesn't really matter, I'm just trying to educate them; to provide them with all the information that they need to make their own minds up.
Having children has changed me in ways I had never thought about. I have never really understood sport. When I was younger I liked watching gymnastics and ice-skating on TV; I was a member of a netball team and a cross country running squad many moons ago, and I even did a bit of ballet dancing. As I got older I lost interest in watching sport on TV and didn't do anything myself. I'm not that active, preferring to drive most places and only dabbling in the occasional bit of exercise when I put on a few pounds. I had never bothered to watch the Olympics as it never interested me.
Again, children has changed all that as I want to show my children what is happening in the world. I took them to see the Olympic torch when it passed in a nearby town and I was so excited. I felt very proud and extremely patriotic. This was quite a new feeling for me, but seeing my boys excitement was priceless. My oldest son had written a letter to Tim Baillie & Etienne Stott as part of a school project and they had replied and sent a photograph. The school had also arranged for an Olympic torch to be shown to the children, so anything to do with the Olympics was huge for my boys.
I still never thought that I would actually sit down and watch the sports on TV. Yet, every spare bit of time I get I find myself looking to see what sports I can watch. I love to show the boys what they could do when they grow up. They are both learning to swim so it was great to show them the swimmers and tell them that if they keep practising then they could be just as good one day. I even watched a BMX race today as my oldest has just leant to ride a bike so this was very appropriate. Then tonight I got obsessed with the men's diving because it's just edge of your seat stuff (nothing to do with fit, muscular bodies, honest). I'm gutted now that I didn't get any tickets to actually take them to watch some of the Olympics live.
I want my boys to see that there's a big wide world out there and they can do anything they want if they work hard. There are so many options open to them and I will try to give them all the opportunities they need to decide which is best for them.
They're already practising their skills.
|I think wheelybugging could be the next Olympic sport|
|Trophies and medals from their latest kickboxing competition|