“We mothers are learning to mark our mothering success by our daughters' lengthening flight.” ~ Letty Cottin Pogrebin
It is always fascinating to watch my daughter do things that our family members have done, things she has never witnessed herself, but are instinctual. When she is on the floor playing, she sits in the same weird way I always have; when she walks outside, she always sneezes twice, just like her grandpa. When she is nervous, she rubs her hands together, just like my mom. Genetics is such an interesting subject, and one that I have especially been studying the past year.
This past year since my daughter turned four has been chaotic, to say the least. Since she was even in my belly, I have studied this precious girl, always making sure I know what is going on in that sweet head of hers. Well, this past year, it seems I have failed more times than not at trying to know what is going on with her, what she is thinking, and most important, why she does the things she does.
One major conclusion I have drawn is her mind works a lot like mine does. When she is in trouble, her mind goes blank and she can’t answer the simplest of questions. I always struggled with that myself as a kid, so I have learned to deal with her the same way I was dealt with when that occurs. Also, she detests being in trouble and hearing the words, “I am disappointed in you.” That sentence has made her cry more than being grounded from certain toys ever have. Luckily, I can count on one hand the number of times I have uttered that sentence to her. I have also learned that when she is given directions to follow for the first time, you have to be extremely patient with her and explain carefully. After the first time she is shown something, she never forgets it.
With all that said, it was comforting to come to these realizations that part of her rule book has already been written. Who better to know how to treat her and get her to understand what I am trying to teach her than how I learn best and appreciate being treated? I honestly have been over-complicating motherhood, just like I do in a lot of other areas in my life and it has been completely unnecessary. It also helps direct more patience in handling other qualities of hers that are much harder for me to figure out.
I believe that as parents, in our own individual way, we are trying our best to figure out how to effectively raise our children to be the best they can be. I always love discussing the subject of “parenting” with parents of all ages. There is so much we can garner from each other.
What advice do you have for parents in learning the best way for their children to learn?