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That’s what I say to myself over and over again. I’m happy with my place in life – I exist, I’m one of the cogs which keeps things turning, I’m not the leader, the thing that makes things happen. I try and do that as much as possible in my life, and I try to make sure H has these values too.

There’s nothing wrong with being competitive – it just isn’t for me.

But then there’s the parenting side of it. When H was born and I was seeing my NCT group once a week, other children would get a tooth first and I’d wonder why H hadn’t. Other children would walk first, and I’d wonder why H wasn’t bothered. Actually, she became the fastest crawler I’d seen, such was her ability to get around – she didn’t need to walk as crawling was easier. She made it in her own time, but the time up to that time I wondered why she wasn’t there with her friends.

Queen H

Other skills came along, and then came school. Fortunately H picked up reading really quickly and moved up the book bands quite easily. I tend to use Facebook as the kind of place where I’ll post if she has achieved something to let her relatives in York and Australia know, and I didn’t really think about how it looked beyond that. A couple of friends pointed out to me that it looks a bit like I’m bragging about my daughter’s abilities. I thought about it, and I stopped. Maybe it did. I just want to exist in our little school group and not be someone who is in everyone’s faces – just a cog in it all. I didn’t think about filtering things so that H’s achievements would be seen by just family – and maybe that’s what I should have done.

I don’t need to change who I am. I am proud of my girl and what she has achieved, yet I need to think about what other people think of me. I need to filter my ways so that I don’t look like I’m showing off, this place is fine for it as people have to actively come here to read things, rather than it appearing on your timeline. I get it.

But I don’t do competitive. One child isn’t better than another. They’re all good.

John Crane Tidlo Recorder

But then I had the conversation with another parent. “oh yes, (insert name) is so much better than all the other girls isn’t she?” I was told, and I hated it. I felt like I wanted to prove my girl is just as good, that it isn’t about one child, it’s about everyone. From somewhere that competitive part reared its ugly head. But WHY?

My daughter is who she is. She does what she does. She does it well and I’m happy with that. We get to deal with the angry tantrums and storming off (as she is only six) as she starts to discover who she is too.

I think it was just being told, quite blatantly that someone else’s child was better than mine in that person’s opinion. It got my back up. It probably wasn’t even meant that way.

H on guitar

Sometimes I need to listen to myself. If my daughter is doing what I think is brilliant, then that’s all I need to be happy about. I need to make sure she knows she’s doing well, that it doesn’t matter if someone else is further ahead of her, it’s about HER enjoying the moment.

I think I do, but sometimes things really get my back up. Maybe I do a teeny bit of competitive after all?