Last night my second son was having one of his “moments”.
He had woken up just as I was going to bed, with a stuffy nose and was too hot. He sat up in bed and started making loud suffering noises, I think, to get my attention. Mission accomplished, I got out of bed and went to see what the problem was.
Kai does this thing where he positively cannot accept the help you are offering, because his impulse is to defy you. Yet, he clearly wants the help because when you get up to leave, he throws a wobbler and doesn’t want you to go. So you sit back down and offer to blow his nose or whatever, and the cycle begins again. Help refused (usually accompanied by a couple of loudly yelled “no’s” for good measure), but then he starts to yell when you get up to leave.
So I picked him up and carried him to another room to break the attention trap. But when we got there he started to freak out (as you would) and try to push past me to get back to the bedroom. What do you do when someone starts fighting you? Well, you fight back of course. Not literally in this case, but I became very stubborn and stood in his way, asking him in a strong voice to please calm down. This worked a treat (NOT) as he became even more adamant that he was getting past me, to get out of the room.
Then I had one of those out of body experiences and saw myself, 33 years old, standing like a stubborn two year old with my arms folded across my chest, barring the way of my five year old. I looked at my son and realised that he had no idea what he was fighting for, and all he really needed was a bit of love and understanding from me.
So I knelt down, wrapped my arms tightly around him, and started to murmur into his ear how much I loved him. He continued to fight for about another 5 seconds, before melting into my arms and nuzzling into my neck. Poof! Problem solved. I picked him up gently and carried him back to his bed, where he went back to sleep until the morning.
I have reflected on this new awareness several times today.
How many problems in the world could be solved if we just gave each other a little love and compassion? How many wars could be avoided if, instead of attacking the other side when they expressed discontent at us, we sent them a little understanding instead? Okay so I know I’m generalising here, but think about it. Are the macro problems of the world, not just a result of the micro?
We Moms have more power than we realise to affect change in this world. We are raising the next generation of world leaders, politicians and figure heads. So practice being kind, being gentle and having compassion. That’s all our kids really want from us. And when they learn it at home, they carry it for the rest of their lives.