Category Archives: Children

Why we do the things we do

Running, parenting - all for love

Running, parenting – all for love

I have a marathon next month in Canberra, the capital city of Australia with a population of about one-tenth of Sydney – perfect for holding a 42.2km race without the need to disturb any traffic or anyone.

In preparation for this event (my second attempt at the distance), I decided to go for a long 24km run this afternoon. Not nearly enough but neither is the availability of time, what with my weekend bathing duties with the kids and the witching hour that is dinner.

At the risk of sounding self-congratulatory, it is amazing how far I have come though. If someone had told me in 2006 when I picked up running again, that I would reach a stage where 24km of non-stop pounding of the pavement and the heart will become as nonchalant a task as cleaning the car, I would have laughed at his face. I still remember the enormous struggle I had just to run 4km in those early days, and suffering the next morning as if I had done 40.

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Rain Man in the house

Rain Man meets Mr Men

Rain Man meets Mr Men

A few days ago, I was shaving in front of the bathroom mirror while my two boys were in the background, mucking about. They like to muck about in the bathroom whenever my wife or I are in there, turning what used to be our only private refuge into a public arena.

Anyhow, this is the conversation I overheard:

My 6 year-old boy, L: Who’s number 7?

My 4 year-old boy, C: Mr Snow.

L: What about number 31?

C: Mr Tall.

L: Okay, if you think you’re so smart, who’s number 10?

C: Mr Silly.

L: No, YOU’RE Mr Silly! Haha!

C: NO YOU ARE SILLY!

C thenĀ proceeded to tackle his older brother and both of them fell to the ground, wrestling. Continue reading

Daddy’s blog – hacked … again!

My daddy's not this bad!

My daddy’s not this bad!

Hi everyone, my name is C and I am Jogging Dad’s younger 4 year-old son. I just found out that my big 6 year-old brother, L, somehow hacked into daddy’s blog backĀ in December last year and wrote up some gibberish.

NOT FAIR! How come L gets to write on your blog and not me?” was my immediate bottom-lipped whinge to daddy upon this discovery.

He tried to calmed me down by offering me a jelly-snake (a bribe which I gladly accepted), while denying ever letting L get anywhere near his blog (a lie which I brusquely rejected). After swallowing the jelly-snake, I pouted and complained some more about the injustice of it all, at which point daddy suddenly put on his pair of joggers and rushed out the door for a run. Continue reading

To all the friends I bored before

In the years of B.C. (Before Children), there was one thing I found more mind-numbing than watching paint dry. No, it was not work – a soul-destroying endeavour but never mind-numbing. Neither was it shopping with my wife for things to clutter the house – the choices always boggled the mind so much that it never had a chance to get numb.

Guess who's talking and what he's talking about
Guess who’s talking and what he’s talking about

No, the thing that never failed to bore me witless, that always lulled me into a comatose state, was listening to people talk about their little kids during social gatherings. It was as if the very act of becoming parents had somehow transformed these once-interesting friends and colleagues into a homogeneous species – one whose conversation skills were confined to talking about their precious offsprings. Continue reading

Indelible Melodies

My elder six year-old son, L, is growing like a weed. These days, I’m frequently gob-smacked by how tall and big he is. Not only that, but L is genuinely developing into a small man.

Jack, how do you put your own kids to sleep?
Jack, how do you put your own kids to sleep?

He picks up dead bugs around the house, while calming his hysterical mother who always somehow finds a table to climb onto when these creepy crawlies are about. He helps me rake leaves in the backyard and never fails to demand fair compensation for services rendered. He is capable of holding a serious conversation with me about any number of topics (especially ones involving small ninja figurines), but mature beyond his age not to embarrass me when I can’t answer his probing questions or match his counter-arguments.

The transformation naturally leads me to reminisce about the days when he was small enough for me to cradle and babyish enough for me to cuddle. Unfortunately, it also brings back memories of some of worst times of parenthood, when L struggled with sleeping. You see, for the first two or so years of his life, L would wake up at least 6-8 times a night, unable to settle himself back to nap, and completely drive my wife and I to the very brink of insanity. It didn’t help that L had an eczema problem which made him scratch furiously on most nights and scream from fatigue on most days.

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