Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Flying solo: Man vs Boys

The words every father dreads “I’ll be out for the day, will you be ok with the kids?” 

Everything within me panics, but that’s not communicated by my face or response. “Sure honey,” I reply.

My wife recently enjoyed a lovely spa day in Milton Keynes, leaving me flying solo to face screaming, tantrums and finding myself covered in numerous food stains. 

I was convinced Laura would come home and find the house had fallen down, with me and the kids sat on the kerb.

The kids will have had the time of their lives, but me, I’m rocking backwards and forwards, feeling inconsolable.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not the thought of spending time with my children, I love my boys, it’s more the pressure of finding activities to fill an entire day which leaves me feeling nauseous.

Copyright: DaddyDotCom 
However, I’m sure it wasn’t just me who was dreading the prospect, the kids probably were too. As a dad, I completely understand that there’s no substitute for Mum. Dads I’m sure you can relate.

I could picture it now. Everything would start well; I’d keep them occupied enough so that they’d barely notice Mummy was gone. 

Then the activities would dry up and in a brief interlude from fun with dad, they’d realise Mummy isn’t around, uh-oh. I would then be greeted with the familiar sound of wailing ‘Mummy, mummy.’

Yep, you’ve probably gathered I’m a pretty self-conscious dad when Mum’s not around and the realisation that my wingmate was about to be away, not just for the whole day, but for the bedtime routine too, just made this self-consciousness worse.

Flying solo instantly brings to the surface all those fears every dad has when Mum isn’t present – losing them in the park or watching them fall from 4ft off the climbing frame and having to explain how on earth all these things happened.

Being honest, I feel out of my depth when alone with a five-year-old and a two-year-old, because fatherhood doesn’t come naturally to me, I really have to work at it. 

In my head, I’d already prepared myself for endless repetitions of:

  • ‘Stop that’
  • ‘Jake, stop hitting your brother’
  • ‘Malachi, get your head out of the toilet’
  • ‘Come here’
  • ‘Malachi, what are you eating’
  • ‘Jake, too many questions’

...and so on  

How did it go?

In my weakness, my boys showed strength. The day, on the whole, was very successful. 

Part of me believes that the boys could sense my apprehension, and aside from a few small brotherly skirmishes, our time together was enjoyed without incident. 

Well, I say without incident, does a downstairs toilet flood and a broken coat hook count?

The highlight of the day was our time together at Chasewater, a local beauty spot, where we enjoyed some great bonding time over a game of football, using the park facilities and a spot of lunch. 

It was all very pleasant and in those moments I realised that fatherhood is something that can be enjoyed, it’s only a battle in my head.

Don’t get me wrong, when I first heard of the wife’s away day, the caveman instinct kicked in. I’ve got to find a way to survive this. 

Making sure bags are packed, that I’ve got every piece of child paraphernalia I need, realising I’ve got to feed them, dress them and get them through the day without accident or getting kidnapped.

Warped isn’t it, that my initial reaction to flying solo with my kids was one of surviving the day? 

My perception of what the day would be like was so far from what the day turned out to be that I was able to say to myself, you’re a good dad don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

It’s these moments I can reflect on when I’m experiencing ‘one of those days’ with the kids and next time I’m flying solo, I’ll be better prepared.

So dads, I just want to say you’re doing great, but still I’m so thankful for Mums.

Here’s to the parenting journey. Until next time - live, laugh and love.


Thursday, 16 July 2015

Ahhh!!! Chicken Pox

Well, it’s been a while since I hit this blog with anything new; in fact well over a year. No one told me having kids would take up so much of my life.

The one-year-old, Malachi, is now two, and the four-year-old, Jake, is now five and will have finished his first year of school by the time I post this.

The last 12 months have involved many sleepless nights, inclusive of a five-year-old who has not completed many nights in his own bed. 

It’s rare that I find myself waking up at 5.30am to start my day without a foot or a butt in my face, but enough about Jake. A new crisis has hit the Waldron household, chicken pox.

The compulsory illness

I’ve always wondered why every human being has to get chicken pox; I’ve always seen it as some form of initiation into the human race. 

Now, being a parent, I fully understand what my parents meant by it’s not the pox you have to worry about, it’s how it’s going to mess up your sleeping pattern.

Anyway, Malachi, the two-year-old has come down with pox. 

Still a jolly chap, despite the pox.
After messaging every person he’s recently come into contact with, including a pregnant friend of ours, who Malachi recently rubbed the belly of, operation quarantine began.

My wife, Laura, is now likely to be confined to the house for the next five days and I’ve already endured one sleepless night as Malachi woke no fewer than eight times on his first night with the pox. 

Being the awesome husband I am Laura never heard a peep, which will score me some points on the female point scoring system for men.

At first the spots were not so bad, but day two brought with it ‘the outbreak’, head to toe and in places I’d care not to mention. 

Cream is now being applied five times a day as we battle to stop the little man scratching himself to shreds.

I know it’s only pox, and I know every parent has to go through watching their kids endure them, and such is the knowledge that they’re something to get out of the way; there are even ‘pox parties’ nowadays. Blimey, I need to get in touch with the world.

However, what I can’t handle as Malachi’s dad is watching him go through this without any comprehension of what’s happening to him. 

I need to protect him and this is not an enjoyable experience for him, but I can’t do anything about it.

The itch

Then there’s me, as much as I see Malachi going through it, I now have the itch. I’ve had chicken pox, but for some reason unknown to me, I now itch all over. 

Get this though, when Malachi catches me scratching he tells me to stop it. Bless him.

As we complete day two, at 7.00pm on Wednesday 15, July, I realised that I’ve learnt something from Malachi’s pox experience, I can’t protect him from everything and sometimes my kids will have to endure things I can’t help them with.

However, as I look down at his pocked face, arms and body, he smiles at me and says ‘high five daddy.’ 

Though I’ve realised that I can’t protect my kids from everything, they’re strong enough to battle alone sometimes.

Now here’s hoping that Jake doesn’t get it. Anyway, it’s time for me to get the cream and lather the man up again. 

Friday, 7 March 2014

The Importance Of Fathers - Part 2

Me and my eldest son, Jake
My last blog instalment finished highlighting that you, as a father, are important. The early years of a child’s development is influenced by you as a dad.

For me, when Jake was born, I had a choice to make. How would I raise him? Would I do it through control, causing him to conform or face punishment? Or, would I exercise patience, nurture and love to encourage a healthy relationship with my son?

This was an important decision and, let’s face it, our perception on how to raise children, as a father, is determined by our own experiences with our dad.

I chose the patience, nurture and love approach. Now, don’t get any misconceptions that I find this approach easy. As Jake has grown up, many factors began to influence his behaviour, for instance, mine and Laura’s relationship, starting nursery and the arrival of our second son, Malachi.

Sometimes patience and love seemed so far over the horizon I didn’t know if I could continue down the path of patience, nurture and love. In the hard moments I would catch myself thinking what would my dad have done to me in this situation? It did not bear thinking about.

But, for every hard moment, there have been 20 heart-melting moments when I look down at his little face and think, you make it so hard to be angry. Sometimes, all my boy needs is a hug to stifle what I deem to be bad behaviour.

There it is dads, revelation, what is bad behaviour? To Jake his behaviour is normal, he is after all, a child. He sees it as exploring his personality, having fun and taking the stance that this is how he sees other children behaving, so that’s how I’m going to act.

It then dawned on me, it’s me that perceives his behaviour to be bad. Why? The fact is in my experience as a child, my dad would have ‘punished’ me for certain types of behavioural displays that my son has, and now continues to exercise.

We need to avoid raising our children as our father raised us, we are different people. We don’t need to follow old patterns, we need to find our own identity as dads, a ‘voice’ that communicates with our children that we love them, we are for them and we would give anything for them.

The importance of us as dads is that, for the early part of their lives, we give children their identity until such a time they are ready to venture out in search of their own. What identity we give them at such an early age is determined by our actions and our words.

Are we developing children of confidence that are assured that their dad loves them? Or, are we developing children that are suppressed by fear with no confidence that their father loves them?

How important are you as a dad? You have the power to cultivate a fully functional relationship with your child that bears fruit in years to come. This is your role, this is your goal, to prepare the next generation knowing that they are loved. That’s how important a dad is in a child’s life.

Daddy Dot Com is brought to you by Wolverhampton copywriting service,Write House. To learn more about Write House visit the official website -

Saturday, 22 February 2014

The Importance Of Fathers - Part 1

Photo courtesy of Mike Eldon Photography.

Welcome to Daddy Dot Com, a brand new lifestyle blog aimed at Fathers. Daddy Dot Com was 'birthed' by Write House founder and copywriter, Daniel Waldron (that's me). Channeling my experiences as a father, the purpose of this blog is to create a community of Dads, providing a platform for us to dispel common stereotypes associated with fatherhood.

Daddy Dot Com is also intended as a forum for fathers to comment, share their personal experiences and give input into the type of articles featured on this resource. Dads deserve dialogue, and whilst I do not want to overlook the role that mothers play in parenting, the relationship between a father and child is equally important, but our input is often disregarded.

I do not approach the subject of fatherhood lightly. To be honest I pondered, at considerable length, whether to embark on this project at all knowing that it opens me up to the opinion of more experienced dads. However, I convinced myself that this was not a bad thing, having the input of more experienced dads will make this project worthwhile.

So, here it is, the first instalment - 'The Importance of Fathers - Part 1'.

Let's break the formalities of introducing the blog and let me introduce me, Daniel Waldron. Yes I am a dad, to two wonderful boys Jake (approaching 4 years old) and Malachi (recently turned 1).

The topic of this first blog is very personal to me because I never really understood the importance of fathers, until I became one. Why? Well honestly, my view of fatherhood was distorted. My parents are divorced and my dad left the family home when I was at a very young age.

At such a tender age my dad's initial absence was something I didn't understand therefore, his importance to me didn't really register. It was not until I reached my rebellious teenage years that I began to notice that, without the influence or input of my dad on a regular basis, boundaries could be pushed because discipline and direction were non-existent.

If you're a dad reading this, you need to know something. You are unique and you play an important part in the development of your child(ren) regardless of your circumstances/relationship with your child(ren).

I feel confident that I can say this because, if I could have chosen to have my dad around in my younger years, it may well have prevented me from enduring such turbulent teenage years. 

Thankfully, I now have the best relationship with my dad that I've ever had and the importance of having my father in my life has aided me in realising the importance of my role as a dad to Jake and Malachi.

The reason I've chosen such a deep topic to launch this blog is because the world is gripped by a pandemic of fatherlessness. I experienced the absence of a father in the home and there will be many of you reading this that did too. 

Let's be honest, as men we find it hard to discuss the impact that the absence of a father has. For me, when I became a dad it raised questions as to whether I was even up to the job.

After all, being a dad doesn't come with an instruction manual, it's one of those 'learn-on-the-job' occupations. I like to think of it as a never ending apprenticeship. 

For nine months (on two separate occasions) my wife, Laura, carried our children. The birth of our first son, Jake, was very different to the birth of our second son, Malachi. Let me put that in a male perspective. What I mean is, I was much more prepared for the arrival of Malachi than Jake.

However, before Jake was born that initial nine months didn't really impact me, after all, the changes were taking place with Laura. Those first nine months for me were, well, a blur. It didn't even occur to me how important I would become in the development of this child's life, nothing had changed. To me, it was still me and Laura but then, boom.

In the space of twelve hours between March 11th 2010 and March 12th 2010, my importance value suddenly escalated, reaching astronomical heights. Jake arrived at 4.36am on the morning of March 12th, weighing 7lb 9oz. I remember it like it was yesterday.

I also remember the emotions I experienced, complete ecstasy, joy and an overwhelming sense of love. Combine that with feelings of fear and tiredness and you've got one emotional overload party happening.

However, it suddenly hit me how important I was to this little boy. I was to be responsible for a life, no longer did my concern surround me and Laura, a child was now thrown into the equation. 

Whatever your circumstances, putting all else aside, you are important as a dad in the development of your child. You played a part in bringing them into the world, now you're responsible for helping them to become the person they're destined to be.

As a father, you are important! You hold a privileged position, one of trust. You are vital to the development of your children. Never forget it!

Thanks for reading the first instalment from Daddy Dot Com - I would really welcome your feedback as this project develops, so please feel free to comment.

Look out for the next instalment - 'The Importance Of Fathers - Part 2' - Coming Soon. 

This blog is brought to you by Write House UK, a Wolverhampton based copywriting service. You can visit the official Write House website @