Wednesday, 16 November 2011


So, last week. A week ago today in fact, William said his first word. His first actual, proper, undeniable, every letter within, word.

He said duck. He said the d and the u and the ck.

And he was pointing to a picture of a duck at the time.

So he definitely said duck and he definitely meant duck. And did I mention that he said duck?

Speech. It brings up a BIG array of emotions, most of which I choose to bury deep.

So here's something you should know about me. I do not like to fail. I am a high achiever. I have high expectations of myself and I take it really hard if I let myself down. You can probably analyse my childhood or my parents or both and figure out where is comes from but it really doesn't matter. Because that's just how it is. I am a perfectionist and expect nothing less from myself than just that, perfection.

Because of this I have a coping mechanism. Again you can analyse and what not but this is just how it is. If I think I am going to fail at something I will not do it. I will not even try. Because I do not like to fail, and if I don't attempt something it dramatically reduces the chances of me failing at it. This may well be why I hate sport. why I don't play an instrument and why I never really forged a career before having kids. If I don't try these things, I cannot get them wrong. It is definitely why I was a wreck about breastfeeding when I was pregnant and determined not to do it. As it was that turned out alright for me and I was one of the lucky ones, as was my son as he benefited from 9 months of the stuff.

And so back to speech. Now this is not so much about trying or failing because it's not about me. But it's about expectations. I have NO expectations of William when it comes to speech. I know that in my heart and in my head I have accepted that he may never talk. Because it's easier for me that way. That way if he does never talk, it's OK. And if he does talk, well then, that's bonus for all of us. But I don't have emotions tied up in it. Ahem.

But then he said his first word. He spoke.

And now I do not know what to do with myself.

Because you see, this opens windows. It releases possibilities. It gives hope. I do not like hope any more than I like failure because one can only lead to the other. Right?

Wrong. Because this is my baby. And I have higher hopes for him than I have ever had for myself. Not expectations, I expect nothing for him or from him. But hopes. And dreams. And with him, hope cannot lead to failure. Because he cannot fail in my eyes. And he cannot let me down.

This parenting lark has turned my world upside down.

I'm trying lovelinks again this week, pop on over and check out who else is...



  1. Yaaaaaaaaay!!!!!!

    How exciting! Did you run around the block naked? I would have.

    Thanks for linking up at lovelinks with such good news!

  2. That is awesome!! Congratulations!! I know exactly how you feel. I once said that even if Buddy's first word was the F-word, I'd do back flips... and now I can't get the kid to shut-up! Happy day for you :^)

  3. Well done your little chap. First words are so great.

    Now for you: Feel the fear and do it anyway. Fear of failure is the biggest reason for any of us not doing things.... getting over that fear releases us to fulfil our potential.

    It is hard to fail, but it is worse never to have tried to succeed.
    Theodore Roosevelt
    (PS There's some stuff on this on my blog - NLP has totally changed the way I think about failure - now, I fail if I don't try!)

  4. I totally identify with this post. I put my hand up as not trying for things that I don't think I will succeed at (hello there Oxford and Cambridge and lots of other things). I also agree that it is different when it comes to your children and I am SO happy for you that your expectations are being exceeded. Hurray for duck!

  5. I love the word DUCK more than ever! Yay Baby W!

  6. So exciting! And so much of this could've been taken out of my own head. My older son's first word was also "duck," and oh, the hopes and dreams and possibilities that continue to open up as he (years later) talks our ears off! I get it. The overachievers in us are constantly trying to figure this parenthood thing out.

  7. thanks for all your lovely comments, it truly was a momentous day in our house! xx

  8. Ali - you prompted me to post this about fear of failure - let me know what you think....