Saturday, April 28, 2012

Day 18: From the Mouths of Babes

Things my son has taught me about life:

This morning Oliver wanted to go outside.  Oliver loves going outside probably more than Elmo (and Oliver LOVES Elmo).  Oliver was not afraid to ask to go outside.

Lesson #1: If you have decided what's important to you, then ask for it.  (Often repeatedly.)

Of course, Oliver wasn't wearing any pants and was still in his pajama top.  What's more, daddy was still in his pajamas as well (hey, it was early on a Saturday, OK?). Nevertheless, when daddy tried to explain this to Oliver he was not deterred in any way.

Lesson #2: Don't sweat the small stuff.  Don't focus on the problems, focus on the goal.

Luckily, mommy had already selected some clothes for Oliver to wear today.  Daddy decided at that point to put on Oliver's clothes.  Secretly, daddy was hoping that Oliver would be pacified with putting on shirt and pants.  Then daddy was hoping Oliver would be pacified with putting on socks.  THEN daddy was hoping if he had Oliver find his own shoes then Oliver would forget about outside.  Instead, Oliver brought a total of three pairs of shoes to choose from.

Lesson #3: Don't allow yourself to be satisfied with partial completion or intermediate steps.

Lesson #4: Do what you can to convince the people who's help you need to accomplish your goal that you are serious about getting it done.    

At this point, Oliver was dressed, but daddy was not.  So, first daddy got up to take his medicine.  Then daddy had to use the bathroom.  Then daddy had to brush his teeth and hair.  Finally daddy put on his clothes socks and shoes.  The first thing Oliver said was, "outside".

Lesson  #5: Be patient when you have to be; never let your patience be perceived as apathy.

Finally, we went outside.  Oliver loves to go throw rocks and flowers into the creek that runs near our house.  Daddy was sure Oliver would make a beeline for the water and, in fact, Oliver mentioned the water many times and headed basically in that direction.  But, Oliver wasn't in any hurry.  Instead, Oliver stopped to pick every flower, play in the rocks and dirt, point out all the birds (Oliver takes great joy in the existence of birds), and generally examine the world we found in our path.

Lesson #6: Don't focus so much on your end goal that you miss the more important lessons along the way. 

We never did get to the creek today.

Lesson #7: When you get tired, come home and take a nap.

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