It was a great weekend- perfect weather coupled with a visit from an old friend of mine, who just happens to have two boys near the same age as Max & Wyatt. Everyone got along swimmingly, and we were even able to have some adult conversation on Saturday night while the boys played.
It’s funny- ever since Max was born, I always wondered, what kind of kid is he? With so many toddlers & preschoolers having characteristic personality traits due to their “stage”, it’s been difficult to tell what is personality, and what is just on the timeline. I think now, however, as we get together with more and more kids on playdates, I’m beginning to see my own children’s uniqueness.
It’s easier to see it in Max, because he’s a lot more verbal than Wyatt, and often, Wyatt just does or says things to copy his older brother (his stage). But I’ve been noticing how outgoing Max can be– he’s by no means a shy kid, which warms my heart, because I was always so painfully shy at his age. He’s comfortable walking into a new house & checking out the toys, etc. without any parental coaxing. He’s extremely creative with his pretend play, and has a really good imagination. This serves him well when there are no playmates around. He’s assertive, but can be redirected when he gets too bossy. He likes to make a lot of noise, and he likes to make people laugh, which I think is one of my favorite things about him.
I’ve also noticed he’s very emotional. Of course all kids this age are, but I think he’s a little more so. Right now, it drives me crazy at times, but I think over time, it won’t be such a bad thing. While he does have a hard time shaking certain things off, I think his sensitivity emotionally will make him a more compassionate person.
Max has always been extremely independent and stubborn- I’ve learned the hard way that NOBODY is going to make him do something he doesn’t want to do. This drives me crazy now, but not such a bad thing for later in life. I wish I had his self confidence at this age. At times he does seem to have borderline OCD, like at school, when he goes into a tizzy if he doesn’t get the carpet square that matches the color of his shirt that day- what can I say, we A types like things a certain way- LOL! But he’s also curious, always taking things apart to try & see how they work. He’s excited to share his knowledge: “Mommy, peanut butter is berry, berry, sticky!” or, “Daddy, you always have to drive with two hands on the wheel”.
While he’s never been much of a cuddler, and many times throughout the day I’ll try to hug him he’ll say, “Mommy, I just need some space!”, he definitely is starting to show signs that he does like and want my affection. He is very attached to his dad, which at times makes me feel left out, but I like that they have a special bond (superheroes, maybe?).
One of my biggest challenges as a parent has been to let things be. To allow my kids to have the temperaments they have been naturally given. I recently read on someone’s blog (sorry, I can’t remember who’s!) that children are, on average, redirected by their parents every 6 seconds. I don’t know if this statistic is true, but I can see it being close. I think sometimes its ok to allow them a little bit more “space” to figure out who they are. I also have to remind myself that their agenda is not my agenda, and to let them be silly sometimes, even if it means it might take 10 minutes to put on their pants.
As a parent, it’s difficult sometimes to see the forest through the trees- you just don’t know what you do or say on any given day that’s going to stick with them, either positive or negative. I make a lot of mistakes, and I’m certainly not the most patient person in the world, but I try hard to make sure that Max and Wyatt know, even at their young ages, that they couldn’t be more valued and loved. Let’s hope it sticks! 🙂