Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Navigating Life...The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

I like to think (hope) that I've learned a few things in my 36 years of life.  Getting comfortable in my own skin has been a long and hard learned lesson.  Now with my Superheroes I get to see them navigate this awesome and brutal world.  My oldest started Kindergarten today.  He is an introvert much like I was at that age.  We have worked at helping him to speak up when he needs or wants something.  He's great at sharing his emotions, his wants, his desires.  Unfortunately and fortunately he speaks what he needs to his peers but being 4, 5 and 6 year olds they don't always listen.  He's the quieter kid.  The one that's helping out, encouraging and kind to others.  The one that get's hurt feelings easily but hides it inside.

Today he asked a couple boys in his class to work on a puzzle with him.  The two boys were already friends before entering class and were having a grand time together.  They turned and listened to him and then went back to what they were doing.  The other boy he asked was an introvert like my boy and new to the class and school.  He looked at him but continued working on his activity with the teacher.  As my Superhero explained the scenario more quiet tears formed in his eyes.  "Why is it when I say what I want or need kids just keep doing what they're doing and don't listen to me?  Why do they listen to other kids instead?"  It broke my heart.

So I had to carefully navigate those old paths from my past.  Sometimes kids are just being kids.  They're not trying to be mean...they're just having fun and don't want to stop.  But one thing in life that is true is that you can have a ton of sometimes friends or a few close friends who will be there for you no matter what.  Those are the friends that are like pirate's gold.  The other friends are like shiny rocks...they look cool, they're fun to be with, but they're not quite what you're looking for.  The pirate's gold is what you've been hunting forever for.  I listed 3 friends that he is close with, a cousin, his brother, and a friend since birth.  "They're your pirate's treasure buddy...if you have that...you'll make it through life because you know they'll be there no matter what."  He smiled and said..."Yeah...they're the real deal.  They're real friends."

I sincerely hope he becomes close with the other kids in his class.  Ideally, they would all bond.  But if they don't I want him to know it's not because of him.  Everyone is different and every person becomes friends with different kinds of people.  It doesn't mean on person is better than the other...we're just all different.

My wish is that we all could know at our core that God made us a specific way for a reason.  He gave us a natural "bent" that makes us unique and I wish for you all to embrace that and see what He has planned for you.  I used to hate that I'm so sensitive, wear my heart and emotions all over my sleeve and face, sometimes loud, quick to act, a neat freak, etc.  But I'm learning that I can use my gifts for God's glory and He'll make the best of them.  It's when I'm trying to be someone that I'm not...when I feel increasingly unhappy.  So be who you are.  Let your kids be who they are.  Be patient if you're fast and they're slow...if you're stoic and they're emotional...if you're an extrovert and they're an introvert.  Be patient.

Train up a child in the way they should go and when they are old they shall not depart from it.  Proverbs 22:6

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