Thursday, May 7, 2009
Are you planting your seeds wisely?
Spring has definitely sprung so I say start now and plant your seeds wisely! Spend all the time you can with your young ones. I say submerge yourself in their hugs, kisses, laughter, play times and smiles. I say WAKE-UP and realize how lucky you are for the little treasure you have. I am an absolute believer of allowing your child to be selfish and alone with just you! It's wonderful and inspiring.
My children are so happy to be able to complete a task undisturbed,I have found that Gabe works better if left alone. They are happier when they are able to come up with original ideas, to be able to wake when they are ready, and to be with the people they love and trust the most... US! They are pleased to see how the world works on trips to the bank, the market, the post office... they are happy to be at the library looking, in quiet, in the morning hours, at all of the wonderful books full of ideas and plans... (if/when we went later in the day-when LOTS of school kids were "unwinding" from school, it was so chaotic that Gabe asked that we go at "the other time when it is like a library and not a playground")
I agree with everyone that what happens is that your young child models and takes in all of the wrong behaviors. It's too early to separate from Mom, and forming strong attachments to peers at this age is not "natural". what is wrong with our society is that everyone needs to busy themselves with friends, gatherings, meetings, clubs, social events, etc... because they cannot figure out what to do when they are faced with the quiet of home and just themselves... They have forgotten how to be intimate, and how to be quiet within... Everyone wants to be entertained, and expects that their children want and need it too, when nothing is further from the truth.
If we lived 100 years ago, and all of time before that, we would look forward to the few "festivals" a few times a year... and that would be about it. The majority of our time would be spent within our own community, where we would be doing the jobs and deeds of friends... knitting baby booties for John's new baby sister, making a new warmer quilt for Granny Ann for this coming winter, canning vegetables for the unfortunate Mrs. Widow, etc... Our social event would be a celebration of bringing in the harvest, welcoming the new family or saying our last goodbye to our favorite neighbor...
There would be no carpool, no little league, no night at the pizza place. It seems so unnatural to me that it isn't "obvious" to everyone where the problems arise. We are too busy to simply "live". Everyone is walking around in a depression, looking for meaning when it is the simple deeds that give meaning.
The simple daily moments.
This past week while my sister Meg was off too work the kids and I "helped" her 18 month old son make some beautiful Mother's day gifts for her. As we were decorating one of her gifts I was explaining to him simply how this was for his mama and how it was for her special day. He totally knew and got right to work decorating and smiling and saying "mama mama".Yesterday when she opened them she was so touched that she started to cry.
It was simple, but so meaningful.
My sister and I were talking about Mother's Day and how at school the teachers help the students make gifts for their mom. I started thinking how my children make me things all the time without anyone's "help". I get tons of cards,drawings,paintings and even imaginary gifts. Those are way more special than any teacher made gift.
I wholeheartedly believe that expecting that a child's soul gets what it needs in a playgroup, or a classroom setting, is just selling the child and parent both short.
Friends are fun, yes... but they should not make up the largest portion of our days, and the days should not always be structured, well planned and filled up and busy-busy. Young children need time to wonder, to dream, and to have you all to themselves. They need to just "be" and not to be learning how all of the time. When again in their life will they have this? Never! Maybe that is whey there are so many "adult children" with problems in our society...
Young children, and young adults need a strong foundation, strong roots... they get that from YOU the parents! Your job is the most important job in the world, and anyone trying to "sell" you their playgroup, class, or social agenda is just trying to fill up their own empty longings for what they don't have the courage to create and face in their own lives! (whew: talk about soapbox queen..!)
Our children will benefit and grow into wonderful people because we fought the good fight! We have shown them what to strive for ourselves. My suggestion is begin to take care of what matters.. teach your children the importance of cutting vegetables to make a soup for all to share, to sew a blanket for the cats new kittens, to loan, borrow, barter and trade, to care for the house, the yard, the neighbor... there will be plenty of time to "play"... remember, "daily work is the play of childhood" and letting them imitate you at work at home is what is most important to a young child.
I shudder to think of what "soul forces" are at play in a child who is being taught vanity ("Let's get pretty for school") and societal expectations ("We have to go... this is our play day") at such a tender age. What messages is that sending? That you cannot rely on yourself to make fun? That you "need" friends to have a happy day? That family is not enough, or that the party is more important that the work that needs to be done?
When was the last time your child folded daddy's shirts? When was the last time s/he swept the floor clean? What matters most now, is being a family and caring for the home and the family... tending to the garden, the pets, and the days work... People with teens complain that all they want to do is hang out with their friends, that they don't want to do their chores, etc... and I want to say "What did you think? You had them in playgroup since birth... you TAUGHT them that was what was important!" and most people just simply don't get it. They were taught, by their parents, what was MORE important... Taught by the way their lives were structured and their days spent, when they were young. That is when the seeds are planted!
Of course, these are my strong thoughts and feelings... and I do admit, I don't have many friends because of them.
But to me the size of my "circle" doesn't matter... it is what it's made of that counts.