I opened up my web browser this morning to search our childmags.com.au website for inspiration for this introduction post and the browser announced, “Stop letting other people put on your shoes. It's Put on Your Own Shoes Day.” It made me laugh out loud, not the least because I had this exact discussion this morning with my 10-year-old son, Eric.
I’m not sure why I told you this, except that it now gets me through the awkward part of starting my editor’s introduction. I actually have three children, Eric, who is 10, Jemma, eight, and Felix, my baby, who is days away from finishing his first year at school. Jemma ties her own shoelaces, in case you were wondering, and Felix hasn’t graduated from Velcro yet. To be fair (in case my digitally native son, in fact, reads this post), Eric does know how to tie his own shoelaces, it’s just that he says my effort is “tighter” and stays tied-up all day. I understand; there’s nothing worse than a stray shoelace mid-soccer game, it could spell disaster.
"So here I am, the editor-in-chief of the CHILD Magazines’ brand, and I’m really happy to be here."
I have spent 20 years working in the Australian and UK media space, in many incarnations as a journalist, editor and publisher. I knew from an early age I wanted to write; to tell stories, to connect with people, and to share ideas and experiences. I have done this, in many genres; perhaps the most exciting was in travel media (ahh, travel, that thing I did before children and a mortgage…).
I have always believed that a ‘good’ editor could work in any genre, and I have written about many things that I had no personal experience with; like bitcoin or aeronautical engineering, but I do think my work here at CHILD will be richer because of my personal experience of motherhood.
My journey as a mother hasn’t been smooth or without setbacks, and I believe the biggest mistake we make as mothers, and fathers, is starting out with a rigid set of expectations, often unrealistic. These expectations are often borne from our own experience as a child, or by the standards we set for ourselves in our professional lives, and sometimes we take our cues from our social group, the media or (cringe) celebrities.
These days I joke that after almost 11 years of motherhood, my expectations are much lower. What I really mean is that finally I realise there is no such thing as a perfect parent, or a ‘right way’ of raising children. In fact, my greatest hope is that when my kids reflect on their childhood in years to come, they will say, “My mum did the absolute best she could do.”
And that’s what we’re all about here, at CHILD. We want to arm you with lots of information and inspiration that will help you be the best parent, grandparent or carer you want to be. We want to validate and celebrate everyone’s unique experience and support you to navigate the challenges with confidence.
Here at CHILD, I learn something new every day. I’m sure you will too. Stay with me, I’ve got plenty of stories to tell.
Read Kim's Editor's letter and preview our December 2016 & January 2017 issue here.