Obstacles? I don't see any obstacles.

I've been thinking about obstacles while watching my son. He doesn't know what they are. Something is on the floor in your way? No matter, you crawl over it, force your way under it. There is a step, or a piece of furniture, or a cat in your path? Just keep going. If only it were that easy for the rest of us. One of his favorite games at the moment is to have Mama (me) crawl around behind him on the floor. He crawls a few feet, then stops and turns to make sure I'm following. I'm usually closer than he expects, I guess, and he bursts into peals of laughter, his right cheek dimple on full display. Then he takes off again. Usually under the dining room table and chairs. Despite the bruises on my knees and the pain in my wrists, I kind of love it. But I can't make my way through the chairs like he does, I have to move them. I can't fly across the floor with abandon - I need to move the toys and pots and pans. I choose to go around the cats.

Psychologically speaking, I feel like I come up against a lot of obstacles. Many I put there myself. (I'm working on this) Some were put there for me. Some, quite frankly, are put there by this kid - the one who seems so rarely hindered. I'm not necessarily complaining about this. It's all a learning opportunity - and on the days where I'm feeling okay and I've had enough quiet, introverted time to myself and I've eaten as often as I should, I dig learning opportunities. But obstacles are still hard. They trip us up. Make us falter in our stride. Change direction.

As much as I sometimes think, "How can I encourage him to continue to be blind to obstacles?" I ultimately think that would be doing him a disservice. Not everything should be easy. Learning opportunities are vital to growth. Changing direction is how we deal, how we stay alive, really. But I do hope that he will continue to be mostly unfazed by them, or at least that they won't throw him as far off his path as they sometimes do me. I want him to learn. To grow. To cope. And to get up and keep going if (and, most assuredly, when) he falls down. I hope I can foster in him an ability to meet his obstacles with less anxiety than I meet mine. I hope he will always be willing to try. If his personality now is any indication, I think (fingers crossed) it's a real possibility.

What do you mean I don't fit under here with this pack on my back?

1 comment:

TresselSet said...

Eli - you are sounding like a wonderful and thoughtful parent. Knowing when to celebrate accomplishments and knowing when to help them up when they fall. Keep it up Mama!