Yesterday my son tried to climb up a rope construction (that looks more like a giant atom with all connections made of tight rope), which, according to the sign on its side said 8-14 years of age.
My son is 3 minus a month.
No, this is not bragging about my son.
Neither it has anything to do with climbing, although the title implies that and, although there was an act of climbing.
This is about perseverance.
And it’s my husband’s story, which makes it all the more credible – because, men tend to give the facts without the “oh my God!” and plastering superlatives and adjectives all over the story. Like women/mothers tend to do.
“You know what your son did today?” my husband asked as soon as I picked them up from the park.
“He started climbing that rope construction, you know the one that’s for older kids. He was going well in the beginning, with the three-point way I’ve taught him, but there were quite a few people around us doing some exercises and moving about, and he kept on looking at them…and obviously got distracted. I kept telling him, focus, watch where you’re going”, my husband explained.
“‘I’m watching daddy’, he’d answer me, but of course he kept on staring…and then, he fell. It was a little bumpy. The construction is about 4 meters high. At least the floor is rubbery, so he didn’t get hurt or anything”.
Of course, after “the construction” I stopped listening.
My eyes grew the size of an ostrich’s eggs, and nearly inhaled all the oxygen in the car – where my husband was telling me that story.
“Don’t worry, he’s fine. He cried a little. He got scared. But then he stood up, calmed down, and I asked him, ‘are you going to try again?’, without pushing him or anything, and he said ‘yes, daddy, I’m going to try again’ and off he went and started climbing again. The fall frightened him but didn’t stop him.”
By that moment my husband’s eyes were watery and red. A tide of emotion was rising in him and I could feel it. Of course, being an ex soldier, a British (i.e. conservative :)) and a man, all that emotion was suppressed and nearly nothing came to surface except for the red around his eyes. The only thing he uttered after that was, “that’s perseverance that no one can ever teach you. And my son has it!”
By that time we were ready to make a duet of the Crying Sissies and the Lovey Doveys, as one could imagine.
But this is about your kids.
When it’s about your kids, it will always be emotional.
Until you breathe.
So, here’s something that neither I, nor my husband, can teach our kids and that is how to persevere.
If you have it, you’re blessed.
All a parent could do is nurture that blessing.
Ah, and yes, our son climbed all the way the second time – persevering and focused.