It Could be a Disaster, or It Could be Kind of Funny!
By Liesl Garner on November 20, 2012
(Caption: When left to their own devices, they Create! Yesterday, Ben made a D.J. station for Bean and a guitar for himself out of paper.)
Today, I am not only the invalid, I am also the one in charge of this joint. It turns out that only one hand is still needing to be swaddled in gauze. The other hand had surface burns, but healed really quickly. Today Scott goes to work. Both boys are home. I have to attempt a one-handed shower, and the boys have said they will hold the hair dryer while I operate the brush. Good-times, Good-times.
Then we get to go to Ben's Parent/Teacher Conference. And then I think, we are going to attempt a trip to the store.
Because I am home sick and spent much of the day in bed with both hands bandaged, I allowed myself the luxury of uninterrupted blog be-bopping and bouncing from one to another, exploring, reading and discovering some awesome reads!
Yesterday, I was reading Brene Brown's blog, and I know I need to read her amazing book, Daring Greatly. She is touching a nerve in so many communities. She speaks to mothers as well as CEO's. Actually, I was directed to her blog from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation blog: Impatient Optimists. She talks about the power of vulnerability. She talks about being authentic and admitting and learning from failure. I think I learn from failure well. I can self-evaluate. Admitting my failures is less comfortable, unless they are funny failures. If I think I can get a laugh, I'm all for sharing.
If it's to share gut level vulnerability about mothering, like Laine did about her 6-year old's behavior, I don't think I'm strong enough to share that much hurt and frustration in the open. While it seems the online blogging community has circled the wagons to be there for Laine, there are also those who didn't spare her feelings and basically gave her some equally public tongue lashings for coming out and saying what she said.
The blog that spoke to my heart yesterday, was Tao te Ching Daily and a delicious article about opposites and balance points. Here's the part that sung to me.
People naturally do the right things.
When left to their own devices, people manage themselves just fine. Our children don’t need us meddling and nitpicking them every step of the way, our employees don’t need us monitoring their every step. Leave them alone, TRUST them and they will do OK. In fact, they will do better than OK – they will shine. This chapter is reminding us that people do their best when we trust them to do what is natural to them.
Of course part of me panics because I feel certain that if left to their own devices, my boys would kill each other or burn the house down. Left to their own devices in a store? They would definitely run amok and cause chaos... or at least cause a scene, which would be hugely embarrassing to me.
Today, I'm going to try a new tactic. I'm going to try to let my kids be kids and impress people or not without feeling shame about my child-rearing skills. The thing is, they are amazing and wildly gifted. They also have lots of energy. At some point, I will have to learn to allow them space to be brilliant without me trying to bridle their enthusiasm. I so want them to grow up and look back with fondness. I do not want them to remember only that I was always trying to make them be quiet and behave.
They ARE behaving... like children.