Sunday, November 9, 2014

A Few Thoughts About my Kids

Do you ever experience looking at your child at some random moment and realize that they are quite amazing and that you've had nothing to do with it?  I've had a few of those moments lately.  I know that I'm biased, but when someone we just met yesterday (and spent a few hours with) told me that I had amazing kids, I couldn't help but privately agree.  They all have their issues (don't we all!) and they make me crazy some days but they're remarkable kids.  How did I end up parenting these three?!  I just have to hope and pray that I don't mess them up too much.
  • A few times lately I've had the experience of watching Matthew talk with someone as he explains some theory that he's come up with or answers a question brilliantly, and I think who ARE you, are brilliant!  He shocks me lately with the depth of his insight, and with his knowledge about things that I don't know how he knows (keep in mind that I spend basically all of my time with my kids so I know what they are learning and what they hear/see/believe/understand, and I still don't know how this kid knows some of the things he does!).  Then, two nights ago, he started to cry after I put him to bed...ever my tender-hearted boy.  He was sobbing because he doesn't want to get older; he wants to stay the age he's at because he loves his life and because he doesn't want things to change and because he doesn't want to grow up.  I held him and let him cry and told him how hard and big those things were to feel.  Then he said that his desire to not grow any older is what motivates him to be himself, rather than trying to be like other people; he said that he wants to live every day to the fullest, knowing that this will make him a little different than many of the people around him.  Wow.  Just wow.  What huge, existential thoughts this boy has and I love how his thoughts and feeling merge together.  He amazes me and I am so proud of him; I love him so terribly much.
  • Seth, I say tentatively, seems, just maybe, to be in the beginning steps of a journey towards reading and it's great to be watching a little bit more 'unfurling' of this boy.  He's showing an interest in reading; he occasionally tries to sound something out; he is finally starting to remember the sounds of some letters; he is beginning, at last, to remember from day to day how to form letters on paper with his pencil.  We have a long way to go, but there seems to be bits of progress these days.  I remember Dr. Gordon Neufeld telling me in a private moment of consultation 18 months ago that kids' brains are remarkable and that they can do amazing work-arounds when it comes to learning challenges, and that this might readily happen with Seth when he is 10 or 11 year old.  Seth is nine now, and I catch glimpses of this truth now.  How I love this boy of mine.  He is crazy amazing.  Despite all of his tendencies towards defendedness; despite his baggage; this kid is so soft-hearted deep down, so loyal and caring of those he loves, so observant of everything, such a hard worker....  I want to go on record as saying that this boy is going to be a pretty awesome husband and father someday; it will be a very fortunate woman who will end up with my Seth.  I marvel at this child. 
  • Lizzie.  Oh my word, Lizzie.  This kid....  She's only seven years old and seems to be coming into her own these days...and let me tell you, this process is - man, there's no one word to describe it! - intense.  Fun.  Very challenging.  Fascinating.  I stare at her sometimes, my Lizzie girl:  In amazement; sometimes in horror; with pride; with fear; with dread (of her teenage years); with full heart.  She charms; she reads people; she befriends everyone, from child to adult; she is hugely generous; she knows when you need a hug or a kind word.  If we can just keep this girl alive and on the right (and righteous) path for the next eleven years, she is going to be an amazing young woman someday.  Her brothers wouldn't agree with that projection, because she is a thorn in their sides with her endless talking, tendency to needle them mercilessly, her tenacity, and uncanny ability to find their vulnerabilities.  But I'm telling the out for this girl...she will be a force to be reckoned with...heck, she already is.  I adore her...and so will you if you don't already.

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