Friday, October 7, 2011

our opposite

When B was about 14 months old, we were picking him up one Sunday from the nursery at church. There's a one-way window over the room the kiddos were in, so we could see him, but he couldn't see us. We observed him on the back wall of the room, sitting on a couch, eating his goldfish, watching the kids play around him. This struck me as a bit odd at the time - why wasn't he joining in with the others? I even thought perhaps he was sick and not feeling up to playing. At that point he was still at our wonderful infant-only daycare provider, and he was the oldest of four babies there (they "graduate" at 18 months), so I hadn't really had the chance to watch him interact with others his age. When we checked him out of the nursery he was all smiles and obviously had a great time. I filed that memory away though.

If you know J and I at all, you know we're both fairly outgoing (him especially) - we love interacting with people and making new friends. I just assumed that the whole "apple doesn't fall far from the tree(s)" thing would apply to our kids - I kind of forgot the part where they were going to have their own indivudal characters, strengths, likes and dislikes.

B has always been a pretty "normal" toddler around us - he talks (a lot, lately), he dives into his play, and loves life. But when he's out of our little cocoon, he's a different kid. He's actually quite shy and slow to come around to others. Admittedly, at first this was a bit shocking to me. I'm almost embarrassed to admit that I was stuck on thinking this was something he learned somewhere and not just the way he was perfectly wired. I couldn't figure out why he was so reserved when we aren't, at all. Sometimes I still struggle with trying too hard to pry him out of his shell when he's having a quiet moment in front of new people. He got a lollipop from a new hair stylist the other night and I was all but begging him to tell her thank you, and he didn't utter a peep. (In fact, he didn't make a sound the entire thirty minutes she was cutting his hair either.)

This kid is teaching me so much about how to relax and just let him be. I've long since realized that his shyness isn't some weird character flaw, it's just the way he is. Once he warms up to people (which sometimes literally takes months), he comes out of his shell. I'm hoping as he grows up he will learn to be comfortable in new situations, mom and dad aren't always going to be there to hold a hand. But for now, he's only two, and I'll hold his hand any chance I get.

4 comments:

  1. funny how we think we are teaching them, when really, they are teaching us - isn't it?!

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  2. Isn't it kind of funny how we are ALWAYS learning this? :)

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  3. You are totally MRS SOCIAL BUTTERFLY to me and I've never even seen your gorgeous face in person.

    Kids are amazing. Non stop lesson in humility and NOT taking for granted that we don't know EVERYTHING. He is perfect and oh-so-precious and his shyness will only make him that more wonderful in life.

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  4. I SOOOO get this... our five 5 year is and always has been the same and my husband and I are far from reserved! Some wise person once said to me... maybe he's reserved because he doesn't need to be outgoing when you two are around. Nice to meet through Mama_Mash!

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