Tuesday, September 22, 2015

What I'm Learning about my Son (And Me)

We've successfully transitioned into "the school years" over here; "successfully" would be defined as the absence of total meltdown from any persons involved.  Additionally, we've added a smattering of extracurriculars to the schedule:  Dance class for Kendall and AWANA for both kids at church. 

Kendall sprinted for Kindergarten, as expected.  I walked her in to class the first week of school, and now I get daily requests for me to "drop her off."  None of this comes as a surprise- school is an environment that excites her, and we had her "Miss Independence" pegged long ago.  Her brother is an entirely different animal, a species I am unfamiliar with in many ways.

Where Kendall is my stage performer, Carter is my "Mommy, don't watch me" kid.
Where Kendall exhibits an eager, soft spiritual side, Carter leans in (or out) with more trepidation.
Where Kendall thrives on rewards, Carter cannot easily be bought.
Where Kendall needs variety and a platform for creativity, Carter prefers repetition and simplicity.

None of the above characteristics are traits I share with my son.  And, I realize he is only three, and many more personality traits will manifest over time.  But it is quite amazing watching his personality emerge on it's own, without notable influences from me.  It's a testament to the creativity of God- we are all so divinely and frustratingly unique.

There is one pattern of behavior in Carter that resonates strongly with me.  And by strongly, I mean I can often feel his frustrations myself.  Carter likes to get from Point A to Point B with as few obstacles as possible.  Or none.  No obstacles, no detours.  The most obvious way this is playing out these days is leaving the house.  When we leave (for school, church, etc.), I must tell Carter 1) where we are going, 2) what we are doing, and 3) when we will be BACK home.  His eye needs to be on the prize, and the prize is ALWAYS being back home. 

The times you will find Carter in tears at school or AWANA are trips to the music room, or game room, or playground, or ANY OTHER DETOUR that he was not aware of at Point A.  I cannot tell you how true this is of my own personality.  "Detours" in plans can shake me up so badly that I can no longer recognize I'm still moving toward the goal.  If you're thinking that this mentality would make living a faith-filled life difficult, you are right.  It's a struggle every day to lay down my lack of foresight at the feet of Jesus.  In the very broad scope of things, I know where Point B is, and I'm heading in that direction.  The rest of life....all detours.

Mommyhood is teaching me more about myself than I could have ever dreamed.  And here, I thought Mommying was all about knowing your children inside and out.  I'm grateful that many of Carter's unique qualities will serve him well in life.  He is sweet and affectionate, polite and compassionate.  He is organized in thought, analytical and calculated.  I hope I can be a gracious helper when life throws him (us) little (or big) curveballs.

And to help him actually throw those curveballs, I'll leave that to his Daddy. :)


Mel said...

Hi... I've been reading your blog. I have a daughter who is 6 months and has glaucoma. I'd love to email with you. can you email me at melaniejdodge@gmail.com

Thank you!

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