Wednesday, July 3, 2013

The Actor

My little one is almost two and he has become quite the story teller.  While he has a growing vocabulary, most of his stories come out in one word bits that eventually string together and make sense.  Recently, he has added gestures, facial expressions and even inflection as he reenacts scenes from our day.  My favorite story he told happened just this week.

I had dropped them off for some special time at Granny's while I went to Bible study.  I left the three of them laughing and splashing in the pool and came home to wonderful stories of their fun.  My mom told me all about my youngest, Drew, getting a hold of the hose and squirting her head to toe while they both laughed hysterically.  Later that night, I asked Drew about it.

"Did you get Granny with the hose today?" I asked him.

"Yes!" he said as he nodded his little head with vigor.  "GUKE!" he continued, changing his expression from joy to condemnation.  "No no.  Mine," he explained.

"Luke didn't want to give you the hose?" I asked trying to clarify and work my way through the story like I would a riddle.

"No!  Waaa!" my son said with a fake crying inflection.  "Cry," he explained.  "Hose!" he said lifting his hands victoriously.

"Oh, so you got the hose from Luke by crying?" I asked.

"Yes," he said, again shaking his head so hard that I thought it might fall off.  "Granny!  AAAAAHHH!!" he said showing his Granny's face as he surprised her with a squirt from the hose.  He then laughed like it had just happened and I could see him reliving the moment fully.  I couldn't help but get caught up in his joy.

This is one of those magical things about parenting - The gift of seeing a person becoming who they will be.  My son is showing me that he is perceptive of people's reactions, interpersonal dynamics and inflection.  Your child may show you gifts in other areas.  We are the first to see glimpses of these tiny people.  We see them before they get embarrassed and before they understand what they should and shouldn't do.  We see them unedited and purely themselves.  Although this gift can be a challenge (ahem...dealing with their stubbornness or sensitivity or persistence or fill in the blank), it can also be a tremendous opportunity for us to channel their natural abilities and interests into greatness.  We can reinforce all that they are and tell them we believe in them.  If we do, they will listen and know it to be true.

What gifts do your children show you?  How can you encourage them and let them know you believe in them?

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