Tuesday, May 14, 2013

The years are short

Please watch this one minute video, especially if you are a parent of a child.

I sort of wish I had seen this when The Child was little, but I sort of knew that the years were short...... sort of.

The best example I have of that is once when The Child was 3 years old I was taking advantage of a program offered by the school district whereby a child development specialist would drop by a few times a year to check on the development of a child.  I wasn't worried about my son's development, but I was a lonely mother who needed people to talk to about child rearing (or about anything).  So I signed up, and generally enjoyed meeting with the two counselors who were assigned to me and The Child.

But one fine spring morning, one of the counselors rang my doorbell.  The Child did what he always did when the doorbell rang - he squealed, "MAMA! MAMA! PICK ME UP! PICK ME UP!"

And I did what I always did - I picked him up.

Well, you'd think I had just committed child abuse, judging from the reaction of the counselor.  She was very, very concerned about the fact that I had heeded my 3-year-old's request.  She told me I needed to meet with a psychologist ASAP.  I was fairly sure that she intended to report me to Child and Family Services.

I went along with her diatribe, nodding my head and promising to shell out the big bucks for the psychologist.  But in my mind I was thinking, "Seriously?  You are deeply concerned that a mother would respond to her toddler's cries?  Really?  Are you afraid that he's never going to stop?  Are you aftaid he's going to be clamoring for me to pick him up when he's 16???? Really?????"

But I complied.  I dragged my butt to the recommended psychologist, a rather stern and harsh woman who would have been perfect as a drill sargent.

As I told her why I was there, her eyes widened with each word I spoke, until finally she couldn't contain herself any longer.  She leaned forward and enunciated the following words with sharp clarity:

"YOU need to get a grip before it's too late.  YOU need to get a room where you can lock that child every time he begs for you to pick him up.  YOU need to lock that child in a room by himself every single time he wants you!!!!"

I listened and nodded my head for the full 50 minutes, paid my $250 and never went back.  Let them call Children's Services on me, I thought - there's not a snowball's chance in hell that I'm going to follow their advice.

And guess what?  Turns out I was right.  The Child did indeed stop clamoring for me to pick him up.  In fact, it only lasted a few more months.  The Child is now a teen, and barely bids me the time of day. 

Yes, the years are short. 



Mary Rafferty said...

Many in the therapeutic field are abysmally ignorant. Having an education does not equate to emotional intelligence!

Thank goodness that you didn't listen to them, and listened to your own wise heart instead!


Big Dave T said...

Nice blog. You wonder what those people were thinking. I remember feeling guilty that I didn't pick up my son more when he was little. Now that I have a grandson, I do whatever he wants . . . pick him up, build towers of coins, read his favorite book, sit down on the front stoop and try to shoot the basketball through a hoop on the garage--it maybe silly but he asked me to do it. I'm going to give my grandson more of my attention now that I have the time to do it.

Linda Myers said...

"He barely gives me the time of day." LOLOL!

When my kids were small and I was a single mom, they would sometimes come into my room at night and say, "Mom, can I sleep in your bed?" I always said yes. And they grew out of it.

B.S. said...

Mary, you're so right. I'm glad I didn't listen also.


B.S. said...

Big Dave, it's so great to see you again, and it sounds as though you're treating your lucky grandson the way I treated The Child in many ways. But I will be forever haunted by his long ago pleading for me to play with him. He always wanted me to build dinosaur towns and things like that with him, but usually I was too busy or tired. I know, I know, I did the best I could, but I will be forever haunted.

Keep on doing what your grandson asks.


B.S. said...

Hello Linda! I allowed The Child to sleep in my bed a lot too, until all of a sudden those days were over. And now he truly won't bid me the time of day!