“Mary did you know that your baby boy would one day walk on water?” – the opening line of a hymn, called “Mary did you know?”
After listening to this song all weekend long – I have the habit of playing a song over and over…it got me thinking – we really don’t know what our children will become. And this should excite us.
As teachers and sometimes as parents, we like to “fix” our children’s problems – ideally on the spot, preferably before the next lesson starts but definitely before lights out! We can’t help ourselves. We talk and talk, in the hope that a solution will be found quickly.
Listening to the children in my PSHE lessons, all many want, is for us to listen or even, to leave them to sort things out for themselves. They even went as far as saying: Sometimes we just want to be on our own and figure out what we are feeling.
But in our demanding and busy lives as parents, we need to move on. Quickly. And there are times when we unwittingly add our children and their “issues” to our To do List. Here’s the thing – we need to be more patient, more in the moment. This translates into loving our children for who they are now – at this very moment. We need to stay in the present – the now. By doing so, we are also allowing ourselves the beauty, the anticipation, the thrill of thinking…what could they become one day?
This is where schools can help. Our children are on a journey of self-discovery. They are encouraged to learn, not just about weather, physics and Latin, but about themselves. They grow to understand what makes them tick – what makes them unique, special and adored by you. We need to resist the temptation to view them as a “finished-product”. Let’s take a step back and ask ourselves these two questions:
Am I loving my child for he / she is now – at this moment in their lives?
And am I letting them grow and discover who they are, on their own – at their own pace?
We will always be there for our children – no matter how young or old they are but let them learn, grow, make mistakes, and work things out for themselves.
How lovely would it be for you to look back in years to come and say, “I really didn’t know!” Allow yourself to be surprised. Embrace the unknown and this will in turn give your child the confidence needed to adopt the same bold and courageous approach to learning at school and life itself.
Let’s help our children find their own feet, their own happiness and here’s to tails wagging whilst our children dash off to school – eager to learn about themselves. They too have no idea of what they will become, and this should not scare them but excite them.
HEAD of BOARDING