Have you ever felt torn when you left your child with someone else, even if it was a member of your family? Have you ever felt like your child was safe only if YOU were around? Did you ever feel worried even if you were in the next room (especially when they were a baby)? Well, I felt all these things times a million and after 3 years of struggling with leaving my son, I came to the following conclusions:
1. My son is an independent human being and he doesn’t belong to me. I am just a guide for him and my role is to assure his smooth transition into life. He needs to experience as many things as possible, to meet people, he even needs to learn about confrontation and territory. He needs to learn he’s the king in his parent’s eyes, but to the rest of the world, he’s just a 3-year-old boy. He needs to learn compassion, humility and empathy. He doesn’t need me constantly around him to experience life.
2. Even if I’m around him, he’s not 100% safe. That explains why we ended up in the Emergency Room one afternoon, after he dislocated his shoulder, right in front of my eyes.
3. Besides being a mother, I am also a woman, a wife, a friend, a professional. For my emotional equilibrium, I have to balance all the facets of my personality. I haven’t figured the ‘magic formula’ yet, but I’m definitely getting better and better at it with time. I also noticed that if I’m well, implicitly my son is well and I can better cope with his occasional tantrums/confusion. After all, we will hold a special bond forever (we’ll influence each other’s state of mind).
4. When I am home with my son, we could be in the same room but do different things independently. I might even let him watch an extra episode of Paw Patrol or Peppa Pig to gain an extra minute to send out an email. Whereas as school, he is stimulated doing activities with other children, learning to live in collectivity and socialize.
I don’t claim I have it all right. This is my choice and I assume it. And I think that each parent does their best at raising their child. But in today’s fast growing society, I believe that we need to build creative, resilient children who are thought to think on their own from an early age. I believe that if they are given a solid foundation at home and an adequate playground outside of home, our children will posses all the necessary qualities to be a productive member of our society. What do you think?