I know very well that he is a handful. I know that he’s too loud, I know that he’s rambunctious, I know that he has the loudest never ending temper tantrums, I know that I usually have to tell him the same thing 64 times before he will listen, I know that he’s a boundary pusher, and a limit tester, I know that he is hyperactive, whiney and bossy.
And you’ve made it clear that you know these things too…
But you know what you don’t know? You don’t know that he just turned 4- that impulse control for some 4 year olds is developmentally impossible in certain moments. You don’t know that he is the most sensitive and emotionally connected boy I have ever known. You don’t know that he fiercely protects his sisters, and that being close with his family and friends is his most treasured moments in life. You don’t know that he is the most caring and kind boy; that he will take the shirt off his back for another child who is being left out. You don’t know that he tends to be left out, that he is naive and gets taken advantage of by other children. You don’t know that he’s anxious and timid. You don’t know that cuddling is his favourite thing to do, and that he wouldn’t hurt a fly. You don’t know that he’s an awesome athlete, and that when it comes to sports he’s a team player, and often the only kid on the field listening to the coaches instructions. You don’t know that his memory is absolutely incredible, that he is an artist, and that if he is given the right tools he plays quietly and independently for hours on end. You don’t know that he is surrounded by only girls in every aspect of his life. You don’t know that his perseverance, his stubbornness, his ability to recognize his strengths are exactly what will one day make him very successful.
As a Child Development Specialist, I can confidently confirm that children become what they are told they are. If you tell a child over and over that he is bad, weak, crazy… he will certainly grow to be all of those things.
You also don’t seem to know that his mama is trying. That I work tirelessly day and night to keep him on his best behaviour. That I am desperate to understand all of his big emotions… that I never let him get off with anything of importance, but that I absolutely have to choose my battles. You don’t seem to recognize that I can’t handle being constantly flooded with the negatives about someone I love so much, and something I work so hard on… I so desperately need positivity, just like he does.
This boy is my “karma child”. He’s the middle child, just like me… and he’s the one who came along when I was the judgy-mom, just like you.
And you know what else? Above all, he’s the owner of my heart.