As a sentimental person devoted to traditions I can appreciate the value of Superbowl parties and events. But I’ve decided that a big superbowl party isn’t a tradition I want for my family. This was hard for Cameron to accept, and it’s been a challenge for me to find a way to validate my position without allowing him to develop a self-righteous attitude about the subject. When he told me the other day that people who watch the superbowl don’t believe in God I realized I had failed and had some serious back-tracking to do. It’s not going so well. Today he reported to me that a boy in his class (we’ll call him “Jake”) made two bad choices. The first choice being that he didn’t let any other kids win the “Minute-to-win-it” game they played at school. The second bad choice was that he watched the superbowl. The following conversation ensued.
Me: It wasn’t a bad choice Cameron, it was just a different choice.
Cam: I told Jake that Jesus is more important than football.
Me: That’s good to tell him how you feel.
Cam: But he didn’t listen. Well he listened to my words but he didn’t listen.
Me: That’s okay, as long as you are always nice to him.
Cam: But I want him to be like me.
Me: We’re not all supposed to be the same.
Cam: But I just want everyone… I mean… like… I just want some people… it’s just, I guess… I just want Jake to be like me.
Having my child become thoughtful is exciting, entertaining and intimidating. Life is complicated and in these situations I often find myself unable to find the words to teach the things I am so anxious that he learn. But it’s all so overwhelming. There were a thousand lessons hanging above me as I listened to him and I started to panic and without meaning to I gave the most simple uninvolved answers I could to avoid delving into something that might be difficult. In short, I brushed him off. Opportunity lost. I blew it.
3 thoughts on “thoughtful child = anxious mother”
“He listened to my words but he didn't LISTEN.” That was so cute! Motherhood can be overwhelming! Just remember that you'll have many occasions to build on the lesson you're teaching (defining personal values while loving & respecting others). And you can always bring it up again when you have more ideas (stories about Jesus, perhaps?). Parenting and is an ongoing process. You did great, especially for handling it on the fly. Good luck!
I have absolutely no help to offer, however, I did want to say that I love your honesty:)
What you say when you have these conversations can be helpful, but it's not what you SAY to Cameron when these things come up periodically that will help him become the person you'd like to see him become. It's what you do and how you are, every minute of every day. So, you know, that should make you feel better, right? No pressure.