Aright, alright…I am beginning to get it. My son is almost 8 years old it would be best if I just moved aside and got out of his way. Now I know this not entirely true. When I do manage to get out of his way, I find myself in his wake, experiencing a state of disbelief of the things he can do and mystified at the way his mind works.
Let me preface this by saying that “MOW” (My Own Way) should have been his birth name. Just when we think we have him figured out he throws us a curve ball and has us ducking and thinking fast on our feet. He was the kind of baby that people would look at and speculate that somehow, some way he had to have been through life before. Weird I know…it’s just what they said. The other frequent description of an “old soul” personality sounded so much better to his proud mother.
Fast forward to the present. He is in the second grade. He marches off to school every single morning with a smile on his face. I believe he tolerates and even likes school. He struggles with not sitting still, not speaking out, not dawdling, not making unnecessary noises, not finishing his class work, not breaking his pencils, not being distracted by people walking by his classroom, not following instructions, not fidgeting with his socks, not talking to his friends too much, not talking to his teacher too much, not talking to whomever will listen too much…
Not, not, not.
A couple of weekends ago both of my sons and my husband went to a father and son weekend at a local camp. There were lots of boys and dads that had brought their fishing gear in the hopes of catching the big one. There was certainly no shortage of fancy rods, gear boxes and fishing lures. A couple of the boys offered the use of their equipment to MOW. He politely declined. Then proceeded to find a 25 foot piece of scrap fishing line and an old rusty hook.
With Daddy’s help they tied the hook to the end of the line. Being the resourceful boy that he is, he had brought some bacon to the lake from his earlier breakfast. MOW baited his hook with a chunk of bacon. He looped his fishing line over his hand and threw the hook out as far as he could. After mere minutes, a huge bass nabbed his bacon bait and MOW pulled him in hand over hand on his string of fishing line. Jackpot! The best fishing story of the weekend! In fact, MOW went on to teach some of the other boys his unconventional angling methodology.
For this boy…he absolutely needs those times when we will simply get out of his way. Times when he can do things exactly the way he wants to do them. Times when he can learn his own lessons through the experience of trial and error. Time to explore and time to discover. Time to crave adventure and experiences to satisfy those cravings. Time to grow into the young man that I cannot wait to meet (albeit not too quickly please).
When we make meeting these needs a priority, I have a feeling the “nots” will become less of an issue.