Wherever I go, I can’t help but notice the interactions between parents and children. It’s an occupational hazard, I guess. It’s not that I judge them—I have not forgotten what it’s like to raise two boys—it’s just that family interactions stand out to me, like misspelled words on a page.
I had the good fortune of being present to watch a beautiful interaction unfold between my friend and her almost-5-year-old daughter the other day.
We met each other at a local coffee shop and had a nice visit. Her daughter was creating a little piece of artwork with me when Mom gave a warning that it would be time to go soon. Her daughter didn’t acknowledge the warning and kept on creating, happily. The gentle reminders happened a few more times and each time her daughter responded without looking up, “I want to make one more.”
When it was actually time to go, Mom stood up, but her daughter stayed in her chair, not to be defiant, she just clearly wanted to continue creating. This was the moment... it could go either way... upset or calm... which would it be?
It was then that my friend put on her invisible cape and showed off her amazing Super Mom skills!!!
She didn’t say, “Let’s go! You’re done.” or “I’m not going to tell you again!! Get going!” She didn’t just scoop her up and carry her away, kicking and screaming.
She squatted down to her child’s level and said calmly, “You want to stay, but your brother is waiting for us. We don’t want to be late. Can you imagine if you were waiting for us and we were late picking you up? Do you want your brother to feel that way?” Her daughter paused, looked up, hopped off the chair, took her mom’s hand, said goodbye, and off they went!
And I got to witness it all. It made my heart happy! I was SO proud of my friend! Thank you, Samantha, for unknowingly bringing me such joy and for being the mom that you are. Thank you to all of the parents who are thoughtfully working hard to do it right! The world is a better place, because you are in it!