In talking with a great friend the other day, we were talking about our kids, big surprise right?
Isn’t it so amazing that they are their own people right from the start?
We were sharing stories about our boys and bike riding. Simple topic right? Funny again how I always find a way to take something like bike riding and make it about a huge philosophical question that I then go on to ponder for hours!
Back to bike riding, I digress (you getting the flavor here??). So we were comparing stories about how both of our sons from the moment they were born and probably from the moment they were conceived have been constantly told how much they are loved and that they can do anything and be anything that they desire to be.
They have been told that they are amazing, special, smart, talented, wonderful, fabulous, adorable, blah, blah, blah. Sometimes I wonder if by being so encouraging we foster a false sense that they can do anything just by being themselves versus having to work and be driven.
Do we do that? My kids are all those things, by the way.
So why with all of the constant encouragement and reinforcement does it take months for my kid to finally ride his bike when I have known forever (or it seems that long!) that he was absolutely capable? And in those moments when I am telling him that he can do it, he just doesn’t have the confidence to just try.
My immediate thought in that moment is “did I create this?” I immediately go into myself and question what I have done wrong as a parent.
Why do we always question ourselves as parents every time our children have their own struggles that they have to work though?
The real answer to the question of why Brayden didn’t ride his bike when I knew he could, had nothing to do with me or my parenting. Simply put, he wasn’t ready.
In a way, we are selfish. What?? Our kids are their own people and sometimes the way they are and who they are is just because that is the way they are and who they are.
It’s not about me. Or my parenting…
The point is that we are all imperfect.
The one thing that I can say as a mother is that we all do our best. We can encourage and love and build our kids up because that is our job, but at the end of the day- they are their own people from the moment they are born.
That is not to say that we don’t guide them and teach them and encourage them and most of all love them, but there are just some things that they are going to have to do in their own time even if it is long after we perceive they are ready.
Most of the time, their need to do things in their own time isn’t a reflection of a lack of self-esteem (which I am so hyper-aware of), or poor parenting, just their need to figure themselves out and let’s be honest- they love to exercise a little control too!
What have you learned about your kids and who they are?