A classic story of boys being boys? Taking his stand in the fashion world? Allergic to anything that covers his calves? Is it a tween thing? Help!
Sometimes I feel like trying to get my almost 12 year old son to put the basketball shorts away for a day to don a pair of pants is like an act of congress! Why? When did this change? Can he even feel his legs when it’s 34 degrees out? I will surely be known for being that mom that didn’t dress her kid warm enough for the weather! Oiy…thanks a lot kid! Hmmmph.
Well…here it is. I have adopted the option of choosing my battles wisely…and you know what, I’m okay with being that mom. I have come to the realization that arguing with him about something that he can clearly learn on his own without my nagging… isn’t about him, it’s about me. It’s always in our mind as a parent that if we “fail” by not making sure that our kids are always doing the right and logical thing, then we will be the worst. parents. ever., right? Wrong. How will children ever learn if we are always in their ear and never letting them test their theories for themselves? Not that I advocate letting them ride their bicycle off of a cliff to see if it will “fly” like in E.T. or anything. More of, you know, like in the “old days”…when we used to play outside in the snow well past when our mom or dad had called us to come inside. Suffering through snow that had melted in our boots numbing our toes and soaked our mittens to the point it hurt to bend our fingers. Simply refusing to go in for a warm-up or change. It’s part of childhood. It’s ALL part of learning and growing. Who knew that the smallest most meaningless (maybe not-so-meaningless) experiences could become such a part of our development. As Dr. Phil would say, “How’s that workin’ for ya?”…that question alone can be applied to almost any scenario. I ask myself this question often. It helps identify when and where I need to make changes. I also ask myself…”how important is it that I be “right” on this?” Talk about a stellar internal compass!
The truth is, that while it seemed it was just about pants…it was really about how the world would perceive me. So I say to that, perceive me how you will. When you notice a huge piece of my heart walking to the bus stop in the middle of January wearing a pair of shorts…take the time to realize that I chose my battle. That battle is to prepare him for the next stages of life, not to keep his legs warm if he couldn’t care less…all for the sake of fashion and comfort. Of course feel free to also take note if he’s wearing a coat and beanie! Whoop whoop! Just kidding. He picked those out himself. See….progress…all on his own!
Lesson: Give children room to figure things out and don’t sweat the small stuff.
Have you experienced these challenges? I would love to hear from you. Comments welcome as always.
Have a blessed day!