I am not worried. I am worried

I’m not worried about raising girls. Girls who will have to deal with harassment on a daily basis.

I’m worried about people raising boys.

People not raising boys right. Boys who one day will become men. Men that my girls might come across.

I’m worried people will continue to not challenge the behaviour of the men they live and work with.

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The Bug

I am tired of being tired and talking about how tired I am.

– Amy Poehler

Currently in the UK we have the bug.

A sickness bug.

Traveling from area to area from school to school.

I generally lack sympathy. I am very empathetic but sympathy for people I have non.

Which might be some what of an oxymoron. I don’t know.

Children are pretty much little walking Petri dishes of bacteria and illness ready to attack at any point.

This weekend we had our 3 year old daughters 4th birthday party. All week building up to it kids have been pulled out of school or worse, children were been dropped off looking an interesting shade of green whilst their parents disappeared like a flash out of the school gates. Reports of children been segregated into the ill class room with other children who had the bug at both ends. Parents strangely we’re now Un-contactable.

With this information we decided to take all our children out of school for the last 2 days of the week.

We have spent a lot of money ( to us ) on a party with surprise magician clown and we did not want her or her sisters missing it due to catching the dreaded Bug.

My wife took them to the new local library. Been educational and all since they were out of school. 5 minutes into been there a child puked all over the place. The mother of the puking child did very little by apology and tried to rub it away into the shiny new carpet.

So after that we had two days of lock down. We did it. We managed to have them all there with no sign of the dreaded bug.

A great party and a great fun day.

11 pm that night.

Shit.

Pukesville.

Our eldest can not stop throwing up.

What a trooper though, she amazed us. She is very much the dramatic and sensitive one.

Too tired and too ill to moan she wouldn’t leave the side of the toilet incase she was going to be sick again. Which in turn means tag team time for me and my wife. Passing each other with heavy bags under our eyes.

She is fortunately better and now back to her normal self.

Moaning about anything and everything.

Now I just hope we have managed to keep her quarantined enough that the others do not get it.

Because I’ve got really tired of it.

The hardest thing as a parent especially in a larger family is the ability to be able to function when one or a few of you are ill. The border line sleep torture followed by a lack of much needed structure means daily happy life goes out of the window. Tempers fray due to the lack of sleep and generally feeling like crap.

I can’t wait for normality to return. Or at least children with the energy to moan and for me to have the energy to cope with it.

Andy.

Environment, wealth and health. 

“It seems, in other words, that poverty tends to make people less fit primarily when they live in a relatively rich country. Being poor but surrounded by fast food, automobiles, and television is more detrimental than being poor in a rural environment where physical activity is a necessary part of daily life.”

The below youth fitness chart is taken from a recent article over at Outside.

“We see big disparities in where the fittest kids come from. They typically come from Africa and northern central Europe, whereas the least fit come from South America and right here in the U.S.,” says Tomkinson. Photo: Courtesy of Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario

Whilst raising four young girls to be healthy, strong and positive people in today’s world and has somebody who has an interest in nutrition (predominantly plant-based) and environmentally aware of the impact that humans have on our planet, I am always drawn to articles like this.

In the U.K. If we want to look five years in to the future to see trends and how they may impact our health or environmental policies we need not look any further than to the USA.

I was surprised and delighted to see the U.K rank has high as we have on the above table.

“In a study published this past August in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, researchers combined data from 177 previous studies conducted around the world to better understand the link between a country’s income inequality and youth fitness. Specifically, the researchers compared a country’s Gini Index, which measures how income is distributed throughout a nation, with children’s performance on the 20-meter shuttle-run test in that same country. They found that the greater a country’s income disparity, the less likely their children were to do well on the shuttle run.”

I urge you to read the original article linked above.

The study as thrown up some very interesting data regarding not only the gap with wealth. But also the impact of the environment we live in having such an impact on our health.

We used to live in an inner city (Birmingham. UK) we chose to move to Yorkshire to give a better quality of life to our children. Even though we had more on our doorstep in Birmingham than we do in Yorkshire we spent more time moving about in a stationary manner, be it using the train, tram and car. We now live in a more remote area and are more active on a daily basis such as walking the children to the school, park, villages etc.

The more wealth and more possessions Humans have the less happy and healthier we seem to be, putting aside the poverty to fast food health equation to one side which is often found in more urban areas such a large cities rather than rural areas you will often find the fittest, healthier and happier people are those content with less possessions be it by default or choice and living in a more natural and rural environment.

As the abnormal increasingly becomes the normal it becomes harder to reinforce what is natural. Girls from an increasingly younger age are more and more body aware. As obesity and larger children become the norm, more and more children are bullied for been a natural and healthy weight. Medical assessments take averages and children who are healthy are told they are considerably underweight due to the average of their peers.

The scales have sadly changed for the worse. A challenge parents have to tackle head-on, on a daily basis. In going against the grain to raise healthy, fit and happy confident children.

Andy.