I was in tears that day on his first birthday when he squeezed me tight and hugged me, that was the first time he had done that and at that moment I lost it, a whole year worth of diaper changes, cuddles, lullabies and endless feeding and patience and it was well worth the wait, from then on things got better, but mama was always number 1. Over the past three years, we’ve become closer and closer and while mama is still number 1… for a long time it felt well balanced. Then came yesterday.…
Ean brought a present for the classroom the other day. It’s crazy how much he loves going to school. He literally cries if he can’t go one day and he’s so psyched every day at drop off and pick up. I’m glad I didn’t push him to daycare and took it all at his pace to make it a good experience.
Today someone asked me if he lives up to my hype of how I raise him with all the careful calculations and plans I make and all the lessons I teach him in preparation for major changes and she was in disbelief when I said it’s all pretty much worked exactly according to plans.
I say almost because you have to leave room for the kid to be who he is too and adapt the circumstances to him to make it as optimal as possible. Now I know, it sounds like I’m programming a computer but in reality it’s not that different. You have an idea of what you want to achieve and you use common sense, research and a whooooole lot of loving code to achieve your goal. And my goal? I simply want him to be the best possible version of himself by taking who he is, adding my experience and knowledge together with research and science to give him the best chance at success. I study him carefully to find his strengths and weaknesses and take it from there. I strongly disagree with passive parenting, where they just let the kid be whatever without molding, shaping, assisting and guiding.…
It’s been over 3 years and even I’m actually surprised I’ve been posting this long! Now that we’re entering a new year and getting ready to add another member to our family I thought it would be a good idea to see what kind of content YOU would like to see on Fatherologist by CLICKING HERE.
Did I ever tell you why I decided to become a father? I’m sure I have at some point over the past three years but as I sat down this morning to prepare some things, I thought it would be a good story to tell as we’re drawing closer to the winter solstice.
I never wanted kids, ever. But, one day Ana brought me a present, a small citrus tree. That following spring, I became curious about how and what it takes for a tree like that to grow. Turns out, all you have to do, is to put some seeds in a wet paper towel, put it in a plastic bag and leave it in a sunny window. Two weeks later my seeds had a little tail and a head and were ready to be put in soil.
My curiosity expanded and I started growing chillies, ruccola, tomatoes, grapevines and my boring tiled roof terrace had turned into a green oasis where I used to spend days just sitting there watching the plants, eating fruits and veggies straight from the plants, in complete adoration of nature and probably a touch of hybris at playing God and bringing life to the world.
I think you know where this is going. I thought, if it was this intriguing to watch chillies grow, how amazing would it be to watch your own child grow?! In September of that year Ana got pregnant and the following summer my fascination with plants had gone from cherry tomatoes to that adorable little creation you all know as Ean.…
Growing up, I didn’t have a lot of steady traditions to look forward to, so to be able to provide them for my child kind of feels like a do-over for me, a change to experience it through his eyes. The morning starts with a present, the annual Christmas pyjamas, julkalender and of course baking. I grew up in Sweden so my Christmas culinary preferences are heavily influenced by just that… well, at least when it comes to the sweet stuff like lussekatter and pepparkakor.
Last year was the first time he properly understood the Christmas celebration and this year is the first time he remembers it and has a recollection of what happened then and what to expect now. This is going to get more and more fun each year… and next Christmas we’ll be four, yeayyy!!!
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This morning, I walked Ana and Ean to the subway with him on my shoulders, holding an umbrella. I wanted to stop to take a photo with him because I don’t have a lot of those. In doing so, they missed the subway by a few seconds. She sent me an angry message “Damn picture, 2 seconds late.” to which I replied “Cherish moments, not schedules.”
Me and Ana are very different from each other. She’s the brain, I’m the heart. How does that work? It does because we are each other’s opposites. I give emotion to her logic when needed to create balance and she brings reasoning and reality checks to my sometimes extremely heart driven choices. Who wins? Whoever stands to benefit the most. I think we’re honest enough with ourselves and each other to be able to say when to insist and when to give in. Someone was asking how I make it work with someone who is so different from me and it’s actually quite simple.…
We’re big fans of co-sleeping in this family. The whole “let him cry himself to sleep” method seems inhumane and unnecessarily cruel. I got the longer end of that stick though. Ean has his naps with me, falls asleep in 1 minute and I sneak out and get some stuff done until he wakes up 1-3 hours later. Ana, who has been breastfeeding, usually wakes up a couple of times per night.
Either way, he’s always slept in our bed, despite having his own room and his own bed. We didn’t push it, personally I love sleeping with him because he tends to pull me into a small nap too and he never wakes up until he’s done resting. Ana, despite the waking up at night loves to sleep with him too, but it seems that might be about to change.…
One of the biggest reasons why I wanted to wait a couple of years to have another child was to give ample time to enjoy Ean’s firsts years, undivided and unrivalled and without any distractions. I wanted to deep dive into parenthood and indulge in it. I also wanted him to be a part of the next pregnancy and so now, one of my favorite things is our weekly baby development sessions where we look at an amazing 3D app of a baby and read about the new developments for the week. We always start each week from week 0 and though he does not yet have an understanding of what actually happens during conception, it will be a natural part of his knowledge about pregnancy. That a part of daddy and a part of mommy come together and a baby is created.
We browse week by week up until the current week, in this case week 10 and we compare it with the ultrasounds to try to figure out what’s what. Of course I had to make a video about it and giving you a good look at this app called, pregnancy+. As the belly grows and the ultrasounds become more clear it’s going to be more and more fun to watch the 3D render up until birth. I don’t know if he completely understands that another human being is going to be a part of our family but he understands where he comes from and has seen the delivery video. All I know is, this is exactly how I wanted this to go and I’m so happy to share this experience with such a lovely and curious creature like Ean.
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When I told Ana I was thinking about giving up on Fatherologist she responded as if I had insulted her mother. Refuelled with motivation, I decided to put together this video. I have no idea to what extent I will make these videos but I simply do it from the perspective of what I think Ean would love to have as he grows up, for longevity and all that. Anyway, hit the subscribe button to be notified about new videos and follow me on Facebook for damn near daily updates in this strange world of parenting.
Having trouble getting your kid to eat? As with everything else kids related, there’s a disagreement between whether or not you should force things on kids. We as adults “know what’s good for our kids” but if we push too hard it might have the opposite effect. For the longest time I prescribed to the gentle approach when it comes to food, fearing that forcing or insisting would result in a resentment against food in general… which for a food lover like me, is a nightmare. If he didn’t want to eat something I would neither insist or push it on him, thinking that he will eventually get around to it.
Fast forward to about a month ago when I… I don’t know, maybe I was just having a bad day or was just sad about all the good stuff he’s missing out on. Long story short, I sat him down in the kitchen with me and filled the countertop with various things to eat. He was kicking and screaming, crying and making a fuss when I tried to get him to try cheese, yoghurt, bell pepper etc. I guess I had enough and raised my voice as well, expressing my frustration about his refusal. We argued for a good while, both of us in tears of frustration and he finally gave in. Our deal was established, he doesn’t have to eat anything he doesn’t want but he has to try everything once, just ONCE. If he at that point doesn’t like it, he can spit it out.
So he did just that. He took a bite of the bell pepper, spit it out and described it… sweet, juicy, crunchy. This became his way of exploring food, by intellectualising it and describing it in flavor, texture and color.
Since then I have seen great improvements both in how he eats, chews and with which speed he does it. Now he tries almost anything simply from curiosity and he even understands when he likes the taste of something but is not quite ready for the texture, so he keeps asking to have a bite, chews it for a bit and discards it.
I understand that texture plays a big part but to deny the experience of a flavor simply because the texture is challenging, is a poor excuse to not experience it. Children especially vary a lot in gag reflex and what type of textures and flavors they can tolerate but it has to be taught just like “don’t put rocks in your mouth”. It’s a trained skilled, to learn how to be open to try and experience new foods, or things in general for that matter. Hiding in a shell of fear is for me not a valid option unless forcing it would be traumatic so I would argue that insisting is a useful tool, maybe calling it forcing is just semantics but I guess you catch my drift.
There’s nothing wrong with nudging the limits of a child, God knows we should do it more often as adults too!…