Motherhood has celebrated moments.
Mind you, it isn't because mom did something, but rather the child did something:
when they actually smile at you and it's not gas, this crawling baby maneuvers himself up off the floor and walks toward you; the first word, the first tooth popping through and when they begin to feed themselves.
Do you remember?
We moms are so proud, beaming with joy as if we had something to do with it!
Yet, we do.
We endured being a teething ring while they nursed at our breasts.
We coaxed, encouraged, and cheered when they got back up from falling for the hundredth time. We went to the ER with them to get their eyebrow stitched up after falling into the door frame-(this happened to Caleb at seven months. It wasn't any fun and daddy actually went in with him...I was a wimp.)
When one of them said 'mommy' first, it was all because we drilled it into their heads!
Then one day they are handed a spoon and cheers resound as the food makes its way into the mouth, ears, and finally the hair!
'You are such a big boy now!'
We've turned a page and life will never be the same...
This happened here today. No, I don't have any babies. But I am a teacher and I've been coaching, coaxing, prodding, spoon feeding two young men for twelve years.
It was time to hand the spoon to them and walk away!
I believe I shared that we are using the Robinson Curriculum this year and began this past Tuesday morning.
It's very different from anything we've used.
One of the goals is for the child to be self taught, which I've always believed was possible, but really had no idea how to 'do' that.
That's been a problem.
Actually, I've been the problem.
I realized a while back that I like spoon feeding.
(Painful confession right here, so pray for me!)
As much as I want my sons to grow up, the truth, or rather the lie I should say, is that somehow I believed I was going to be the one to make that happen on my terms.
They are and have been more than capable to handle difficult tasks but I felt it was my responsibility to 'remind' them over and over, all the while enabling them to use me as a crutch.
I have been pursuing Him in this role as mother to these two twelve yr. old boys and asking Him for help. He not only has heard my prayers, but has been speaking loudly to my heart as to how to go about letting them grow up...
KEEP YOUR MOUTH SHUT, DAUNE!
So elementary, right?
Sure, but to flesh that out today meant that I had to keep praying (for me!), remind myself of what God told me and walk out of the room in order to let this child sit at his 'high chair' and stare at his math book until he decided that he could learn the material BY HIMSELF!
At one point, I actually apologized for saying something to him after I told him I wouldn't!
The 'meal' was something different: icky tasting graphs he'd never tasted before and he wanted mom to help him 'eat' this mush by regurgitating it for him.
Mr. Robinson speaks about this...he says just walk away and let them sit there until they decide they are going to learn it. That sounded so 'harsh' at first reading, but now I see the value.
Anyway, after an hour and forty five minutes of him sitting, staring, sighing, laying his head on the book, telling me that the book isn't giving him any help in understanding what the words mean, telling me he prayed and it didn't work, etc., I encouraged him to keep reading it and suggested a dictionary might help him understand the words in the lesson.
He got three dictionaries: Webster's 1828, a collegiate version and a children's dictionary.
I walked out of the room again, held my breath, prayed, walked back in, encouraged him that the words were, in fact, in the dictionary (he complained they weren't even in there!) and then left the room again...another sigh...from both of us!
The light bulb went on and this infant child of mine picked up his spoon and began to feed himself.
This momma is celebrating! I bragged to everyone about what my 'baby' did today!
Yet, I see this landmark moment as a test I passed.