Over winter break, the kids and I went to Water Tower Place for a little shopping. We first took Julia to the American Girl Doll Store. One of her dolls got her hair done at the American Girl Salon (which usually ends up costing about the same as a trip to the salon for us human dolls!), and Julia picked out a few items using a Christmas gift card.
Ivan did a little shopping too for himself the Lego Store. He’s one of those people that browses the whole store before making a decision on what to buy. He puts a lot of thought into his purchases. He is not impulsive at all.
On Ivan’s second lap around the store, he took a closer look at these Lego architecture sets, and without further hesitation he asked if he could get one.
I looked at the box. The structure seemed pretty complicated, and it was targeted for ages 12+, so I told Ivan no. I told him he wasn’t ready yet and that we needed to practice more with the car kids that we already had.
Being the super sweet boy that he is, he said, “Ok, Mommy,” and continued to browse around the store. Within seconds, I regretted I said those words.
Why was I denying my son the chance to challenge himself? If he needed help, we could just do it together…
Most of the time, when I’m about to tell my kids no, I think why not YES? Why not read one more book before bedtime? Why not slide down the slide one more time? Why not get another five minutes of snuggling in? Why not buy the freakin’ Lego set??
So, we bought the Lego set. And you know what? That kid proved me wrong.
Ivan worked on that Lego kit for two straight hours when we got home from Water Tower Place. And when he got up the next morning, he worked on that kit for another two hours. By 10 AM he completed that kit. He completed that kit that was for ages 12+. He completed that kit that I thought he couldn’t do.
As a parent, there are only so many moments that you have with your children. I personally can’t believe how fast the years are flying by! I know that my time with my kids is limited. One day soon they’ll be on their own. They’ll be with their friends. They’ll be living their own lives. But right now, I have control over what happens, I choose to say yes.
I choose to say yes to dancing one more song during our dance parties. I choose to say yes when asked to play tag with them at the playground. And I choose to say yes when my children ask to challenge themselves when I myself might initially hesitate.