Monday, March 30, 2009

A Mother's Wisdom--Confirmed

Okay, so I had two very cool things happen this weekend that confirmed my Mommy wisdom.

Scene One:

On Friday, hubby and his friend took the kids camping. They were only about 10 minutes away from home at a campsite at the beach, and it was a beautiful, unusually warm evening, so I decided to stop by the campsite after work. The boy had found a cool bug and had it safely stowed in a plastic Easter egg. You may remember from previous posts that my son is a little naturalist, even to the extent that he was a biologist for Halloween. I'm not kidding. He's also a little bit obsessive, so on Friday when he unknowingly dropped his bug and then couldn't find it again, he was distraught. And it went like this:

Me: Well, there's this thing that people say about situations like this: Easy come, easy go.

Him: But it was really hard to find, not easy, and I won't ever be able to find another one. (He can be a bit fatalistic.)

Me: Well, you never know buddy. Things come into our lives, and then they go out. But that's just how life is. You'll just have to wait and see.

So he sniffled some more, and we packed up the beach paraphernalia and went back to the campsite. At which time he discovered hundreds, if not thousands, of the same bug crawling around on the ground and curbs. It was sunset, so he concluded that they must be nocturnal, and he spent the next hour gathering them.* I said, "See Buddy? Easy come. Easy go. Easy come!" And he gave me a big smile.

Scene Two:

The kids were playing near a creek that goes through a nearby town. The boy found a big black beetle. He wanted to save it for a while so that he could show it to his dad, who was meeting us later. But after carrying it around for a while in his little bug trap, he, somehow, accidentally dropped the beetle in the creek and it got swept away. He cried, sad about his loss and the possibility of the beetle's death by drowning. I told him the beetle would be fine, and then I proceeded with this bit of mommy wisdom:

Me: Remember when you were camping and you lost the bug and Mommy talked about "easy come, easy go"?

Him: Yes. (sniffle)

Me: Well, this is like that again. You happened to find the beetle, and you got to enjoy it, but now it's gone. But you'll find something else another time.

Him: (Sniffle). I'll never find another one like that. (See the fatalism?)

Me (deciding to expand on my wise teachings): Sometimes, things have to go out of our lives in order to make room for something new.

Him: Silence.

Me: (Repeating the same sentiment in various forms).

Okay, so then we walked towards the bookstore to meet daddy, little sister in tow. He grumbled about his loss, and I reprimanded the grumbling and also repeated my wise words.

And I'll be damned if five minutes later he didn't spot--on the sidewalk, next to a parking meter--the coolest walking stick bug I've ever seen.

Me: See buddy? Didn't I tell you? Sometimes things go out of our lives in order to make room for something new.

Him: Nodding, smiling, holding his stick bug.

And I basked in the glory of my wisdom, and I thanked the Mommy God or Goddess for this outcome and the confirmation of the wisdom that is Mommy's.

*For discussion of my willingness to allow my son to gather and keep some items from nature, please see my previous post on grasshopper abduction.


Ink said...

Wow. That's really wonderful and impressive! Starrifying you!

Academic, Hopeful said...

Perfect post! I hope I am equally Zen with my kids one day.

Good Enough Woman said...

Well, I didn't exactly expound on the part of the conversation--between the beetle and the stick bug--during which I said something like, "Buddy, if you're going to get this grumpy, we're not going to be able to look for bugs anymore."

Fatalism, I'd like to introduce you to Ultimatum.

Academic, Hopeful said...

Well, we all select reality in our blogs! I still think you sound like a very thoughtful, conscientious mother. I had to learn about loss and emotional self-regulation the hard way!