Yes, I said it. I said what we all think! We all want the best for our children and, of course, we all hope that they are born intelligent. It seems to me today that is the main focus of child rearing. How much smarter can I can I "make" this child? Every toy, every activity, every thing we do now a days seems to have some ulterior motive intending to make our children much more intelligent. I feel myself being sucked in at moments - pushing M to learn his letters and numbers, to potty train or get into that big boy bed, trying to ensure he has a full range of experiences from helping mommy bake to children's museums to the library and every event in between... then I am hit by reality.
He is a 2 year old - he will learn his letters & his numbers when he ready, no child ever gets to be over the age of five without becoming potty trained and moving out of a crib and all of the experience M needs is to be around K and I enjoying happy fun filled moments running around picking up dog poopy on a sunny afternoon in our backyard or walking the trail near our home talking about the water rushing past and the birds flying over head... I was reminded over the weekend that M is going to be a intelligent, happy, fun loving, kind person because of these moments. Not because he can recite his ABCs and 123s before other kids.
Sure, I want him to be smart (who doesn't want that for their child?) but I do not want to drive him to be smart. I do not want to rub off on him the drive I always felt to be better then other people - to win the race always or else feel like a failure. The kids who seem to be the most satisfied are those that get support and love and attention - not always those that win every race or have straight A's or have it all.
He is probably not headed for MENSA since he just seems to be getting into potty training and even that comes and goes (he poops in the potty now (!!) with much prompting and he pees as long as he is naked so he is naked often... expect streaking in our house...) He can recite part of his ABCs which is very cute but he does not usually get them all... in the right order... and we probably don't do "enough" art projects and learning activities when we are together - but dang if that boy is not the happiest kid around! And I need only see him smile and hear him laugh - that glimmer of excitement in his eye when he spies something new (or old for that matter!) But most of all I only need to hear him say "I love you mommy" with that sweet sloppy wet kiss and that huge bear hug that he has perfected to know that nothing else matters as long as I am the best most supportive mommy I can be. M is brilliant because he has helped me to see that today.