Sunday, 18 October 2020

"Mommy, YOU'RE SO UNFAIR!"

LittleLim, 

Today you faced a problem. Today you asked for help, but I didn't offer it to you. Today, you got angry and upset because I didn't help you even though you have been taught that "if you don't know, ask for help!". Today you threw a temper tantrum, cried, stomped around and demanded that I help you but I didn't. I walked away. You followed. Then you decided to tone it down. You pleaded, well mannered and kind - I almost gave in, but I didn't. I told you to "figure it out" and you got angry. Today you decided to give up. 

LittleLim, 

Today you faced the same problem again. Today you asked for help again, but I didn't offer it to you. Like the last time, you threw the same temper tantrum. "Mommy, why won't you help me?!!!" I told you that you have to figure it out yourself. I dropped a hint on how to help you solve the problem and you got angry with my answer and stomped away. "You're so unfair!!!" you shouted. Today you decided to give up again.

LittleLim,

Today, you faced the same problem. I expected you to come running to me again. But you didn't. Instead you sat there with your problem. I expected you to get frustrated and angry, I expected you to stomp away but you didn't. I observed you bracing myself for a meltdown, but it never came. It was like a lightbulb moment, I saw your brain gears kick in, I saw you registering what I said before and I saw you attempt to help yourself. You couldn't. You came to me for help. I asked you how do I help? And you told me YOUR solution. I noticed it was different from what I hinted previously. We worked on it together according to your plan. We solved it. Or YOU solved it. I just enabled you. 

***

I asked you - how do you feel? 

You looked at me proudly and said "I feel happy. I did it myself!" and that's what I wanted. I want you to remember this sense of accomplishment and pride of doing it yourself. You see, I wasn't mean or unfair or unreasonable when I asked you to figure it out yourself. I would always be there to help you. But there are days where I want you to depend on yourself, on your abilities and to figure things out on your own because there will be days where mommy won't know the answers or days where mommy won't be around to help. I want you to know that you have the ability to fix things yourself, that your brain is a powerful tool and to never give up whenever you face a roadblock. God only knows, how life is littered with those pesky roadblocks and if you gave up at every turn, you'll miss out so much on the beauty of life and the treasures waiting. 

Most importantly, I want you to realise that you are always learning. Just like mommy. Today I learnt that there are other ways to tackle the same problem and you showed me that. We should always be finding ways to do things better, to change it up, to create different ways to solve the same problem and that my dear, is how we improve. That's how new ideas come about, how we innovate, create and build. Now, whenever you're faced with the same problem again, instead of screaming and getting upset, you're now able to solve it yourself. That problem will not be a problem again for you. That's the other thing about life, if you don't learn from your problems, it will always be there following you, haunting you and you'll always find yourself face to face with it. So learn baby, learn. 

And some days, you will feel like I'm being unfair. I'm being unreasonable. I'm being unhelpful. But always remember this, I will still be there watching over you. I'm unfair because I want you to grow. I'm unfair because I want you to be empowered. I'm unfair because I want you to think and be independent. I'm unfair because I never want you to give up. I'm unfair because when life happens, I want you to remember you solved things on your own, and one more problem will not stop you from being great. 

Love, Mommy.

-Ally

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