I CAN….NOT! Part 2

Princess T: Mum, I can’t believe you couldn’t do that. Daddy is strong and can do it.

Baby T: You need to go back up there, mummy.

 We recently went on a family trip in July (Thank God, they’ve opened outside… haha) and one of the activities Dr. O and I had to do was zip-lining. I’ve always had a fear of heights but I still push myself every now and again as I don’t want to be held bound by fear.

I got geared up but only got as far as a few steps. Dr. O was right in front of me and an instructor behind me saying all the right words. I would take one step forward and two back till I eventually apologised and left.

The girls were watching us, taking photos and making videos. I could hear them say “Mum, you can do it”, “Mum, just go ahead like daddy”, “Don’t be scared Mummy”.

Honestly it would have been easier to face my fears up there than the conversation I was going to have with the kids later. I felt I had let them down.It worried me that I had showed them an example of fear and giving up.

I quickly had a conversation in my head about my own feelings towards myself (kids can easily see through you). It is okay not to have it together all the time, grownups are only human too and we can’t be perfect at everything all the time.

There is this saying that goes ‘the day you find out your parents are human is the first day of the rest of your life’ . I completely agree with this statement. You see, as a child I thought my parents were perfect and could do no wrong. Actually, I thought grownups were perfect.

I think one of the best things we can do for our kids really is show them some level of vulnerability, not hiding our weaknesses and strengths from them. I’m of the opinion this helps them accept their humanity better.

It’s ok to tell your children you had a bad day at work or you lost your temper in traffic and you regret it. They are able to relate with this and manage their expectations.

One day I told a friend my husband and I have never had a disagreement in the presence of our kids, I assumed this was a good thing. Her school of thought was ‘how do you then make them understand conflicts are only natural and conflict resolution doesn’t have to be difficult’. This really got me thinking, am I shielding them from a natural process? Am I raising children who shy away from addressing conflicts as they haven’t seen it before at home? Of course, disagreements do not have to become arguments.

Back to the main topic, I explained to my kids that day how I really tried my best by going up there even though I was scared. I gave it a go, so they need to always face their fears by at least trying first. It is ok to fail at something every now and again, it doesn’t define you. Also, zip-lining is not a skill I need in my life. If I were an athlete then that’s a shame but I’m a doctor and giving my best to that service so what does it matter if I’m scared of heights.

Actually, I also showed her a photo of myself parasailing in Nice, France, 2years ago. That was me facing my fears and also a lame attempt to balance the disappointment.

Parasailing in France

Princess T quoted “But I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength” – Phillipians 4 v 13, which is probably her favourite scripture with her dad.

I find it fascinating how kids can throw your own words right back at you when they think you’ve contradicted yourself. I was tempted to say ‘Hey, Apostle Paul said that, not me’…….hahaha

Everything is permissible for me, but not all things are beneficial  

I Corinthians 6 v 12

Even if we had the ability to do everything, we shouldn’t concern ourselves with it all. There are certain things pertinent to your career, purpose or life’s goal, focus on that and work to improve it.  Can you imagine an elephant worrying about its inability to fly like a bird? 

Following the last post on not pushing ourselves beyond our current abilities, I also think these are life’s principles we need to teach our kids whilst encouraging them to believe they can do anything. But how can we teach them if we don’t know or practise it ourselves?

I’m looking for some interesting stories on when you might have felt you let your kids down or shown your vulnerability. Also, any advise on dealing with situations like this without contradicting myself.

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Itunu Akinware

The day we all found out our ( Nigerian) parents didn’t all come 1st in class at school…..that was the first day of the rest of our lives….

Love this blog

Mojisola Olubu



Its natural to want to seem invincible to our children, but being vulnerable is a normal human emotion which we also need to teach our children to recognise. We dont always have to have it all together, but we can always strive to do our best and sometimes do things outside our comfort zone. As i raise my son im learning how important it is to talk to our children about how we feel and also how they feel. Reading this has made me start thinking about my fear of heights and flying and how i will address that in future with my little man.

Abiodun Olaitan

Being real as parents is what we must encourage our children to learn. Tell them Daddy and mummy argue, telling them that mummy is free to express her opinion and will not change daddy being a hero. Will bring out the good personality in them as they grow up.

Tutu Palmer

Such heartwarming view and take on self internalising, I particularly like the part of mummy daddy conflict, which I battle with, as my husband is more the shielder (possibly from his experiences as a child) and I more the “open it all up and put it out there! ” then again, different views could apply depending on the scenario.
But what a lovely read !!


I love princess T. She is a smart girl. Vulnerability or moments of weakness is a talk I have constantly with my girls. I encourage to try their best at anything, but also to know it’s ok if it’s not perfect or they couldn’t go through with it as long as they gave it their best shot.
About how much friction between parents a child should witness, I have a different opinion on that. This because in reality somethings have a way of coming out not the way we intended. So I use other means to teach them about conflict resolution like observing them with their friends and siblings.

Omotola Awotunde

I like this, for me the whole read is the main write up and the comments, they are full of wisdom
I need to have a reminisce on this particular write up
Great stuff!
Thank you

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