Wednesday, 26 March 2008

Movin' On, Again

Movin' On, Again

It is my experiences, so far, that my kids drag me forward. Them determined to move on, usually dancing and singing as they go, and me bewildered and unprepared lagging behind in a daze. They always seem to get to the next stage just a few weeks before I think the next stage exists, so I spend a little bit of time trying to get used to the idea, while they walk confidently and assured in what they have obviously been working up to for some time.

It’s an experience I’ve come to enjoy, kind of like the first time on a new roller coaster – every turn and dip comes as a complete surprise, but it’s sure a fun ride, anyhow...

Who Moved My Cheese, by Spencer Johnson, is such a mild and jovial little book – those wee men and the wise mice, all responding to change in the different ways people do. There is wisdom in it for parents, and these transitions will come to us all whether we’re Sniff, Scurry, Hem or Haw.

So, what’s happened? Well, the younger of my two beautiful daughters left the house this morning at very shortly before 6:30am (this is the child who loves sleep and sleeps-in every opportunity and has been known to stay in bed until after 2pm), to go to her very first ‘real’ job (what the rest of them, to date including housekeeping, babysitting and a great deal of volunteer work, qualify as is a mystery to me, but this one will come with a payroll cheque). Her shifts, which she happily agreed to, begin at 7 and end at 3. She has had similar hours before (8-4 as a children’s workshop helper), but only for a week, and it required a lead-in and a great deal of preparation... to say nothing of how tired she was the third day in.

This sleep-in child got up before 6, showered, dressed, collecte the things she needs for the day and left the house smiling.

O-kay... I’m ready for this, totally.

Funny, how the things you ‘know’ turn out to only be things you ‘believe’, in the end. I always ‘knew’ (or felt confident that I knew) that whatever my kids did at 11 or 13 would have little bearing on what they could accomplish at 16 or 20 – they’d still be learning and growing and developing and would not be ‘stuck’ doing whatever they did then. Sure, I ‘knew’ that – but my response to how readily this ‘always prefers to stay in bed’ child has moved away from that stereotype, because she wants something different now belies how I knew it. I’m pleasantly surprised by seeing what I thought I expected. Turns out my expectation was more tentative than I would have guessed...

I suppose that makes me Haw. Ha!

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