Little kids are funny – you know how when they don’t want something to be how it is they simply put their hands over their eyes to block it out: ‘What I can’t see won’t hurt me’. As they get older they realise the can actually close their eyes – more effective in blocking out your view of life, if not life itself.
It all starts with games of Peek-a-Boo, when the baby/toddler is totally convinced that the world has disappeared just because they’ve covered their eyes, only to miraculously reappear when they move their hands away. Even funnier, when we cover our eyes and then uncover them with a ‘BOO’, they think we’re magic too.
I like being perceived as magical.
Lessons from the little ones
My two year old (Little Yang) put his hands over his eyes and then pulled his hat down over them for good measure as I bade him a tearful (my tears) goodbye for his first day in ‘junior kindy’. His tears came later when he realised I wasn’t coming back (at least not until just before lunch). Then he cried out of sheer relief and giggled joyfully when I arrived to pick him up – a reunion that made parting almost worth it.
Our little man will have to get used to his two days a week in junior kindergarten and before long he’ll be able to face it without trying to block things out. And when I pick him up in the afternoons, he won’t want to leave. He’ll cope with the transition, eyes closed at first, but soon enough he’ll be wide-eyed with wonder.
Why resist the inevitable?
We can resist change, if we want to, but eventually we just have to accept it. No amount of screwing our eyes shut against the harsh light of reality is going to convert things back to how they used to be. Or we can embrace change, wide-eyed with wonder and open in our hearts and minds, making the adjustment easier (if not easy). We can even seek transformation – if only we have the courage to try.
Resilience through change
I think of my son and the amount of change he’s had to cope with in the two short years of his life – separation from his birth mother, eight months in a Chinese orphanage, adoption by parents who looked and seemed (but hopefully aren’t) totally strange, a brief settling-in period in Australia, relocation to the cold of Canada, then back to Australia and the joyful realisation that he can now get around in little more than a nappy (diaper) most of the time. And that’s not the whole of the changes, the novelty he confronts (and usually delights in) every day.
Change is a gift for your future
Life as as a young child is a daily story of evolution, especially in my son’s experience. I hope it makes him resilient and I know it makes him inspirational as I contemplate the changes that I find difficult.
If a little kid, a two year old, can be a master of adaptation, then how can we fail to learn the lessons our ever-changing lives gift to us?
Even if you must close your eyes at first, go on, CHANGE – you never know what you’ll see when you open them up again! It might just be magical. BOO!
I’d love to hear about the changes you’ve made – eyes closed or open? Has it really been as scary as you imagined?