Tonight I watched my 18 month old deliberate and negotiate getting off the bed and onto the floor, I watched her think about it, start to do it, and then stop and then start to do it again, and then stop and then like a flash, she fell/shimmied off the bed.
I watched her do this about 5 or 6 times before I took a picture of it. Some of the best parenting advice I have ever gotten is, “Don’t miss what is happening NOW for the first time because you are trying to capture it on camera.”
When she started this, I REALLY wanted to help her and I even started to reach my hand out, but then as I was in the act of doing it, I realize, she has to do these things (so it begins!!!!) and so many others by herself so I withdrew my hand and watched….. Ready to help but not offering it unless she looked at me or seemed to want help. I watched her really think and contemplate and she made a few squeals (her newest habit is squealing randomly) as she thought about it. She seemed to be saying “okay so I am going to get off the bed.” “Okay, wait, this is pretty high, so maybe I will come cuddle next to Mom.” so she sat next to me for a few seconds and then shimmied back to the edge again.
I watched the wheels turn as she figured it out, and again, I waited to see if she needed my help.
Guess what? She didn’t. She constantly amazes me with how fearless she is. She will run into a wall or fall down and I am sure she is going to scream like a banshee but before I can “pause for reaction” she is already up and moving again. It reminds me that she is teaching me things all the time.
It’s this and many more but here are the top 3.
- She teaches me to appreciate every bug, leaf and flower on our walks.
- She teaches me to wait, wait, wait and relax, relax, relax.
- She is teaching me to dance like no one is watching, and sing to ALL the songs.
If my 18 month old can teach me something, who is to say there is not something for all of us to learn from each other. That person you can’t stand and say hi to every morning?
What if you asked them – “how are you?” and really wanted know. I am constantly in awe of the lessons waiting for us in the people around us. I heard something today that I really like. “You should learn three new things from every person you meet”
What a great way to add to your education.
Think About It….