I’ve heard some say that when we have children, we should lower our expectations. That didn’t sit well with me as I think we can expect much of them, challenge them, respect their ability to learn and grow beyond what we think. But I’ve begun to realize that I do need to lower my expectations a bit in order to truly honor my children in their current stage of life – childhood! They don’t understand the concept of time. They don’t know what “next week,” “next month,” “in five minutes,” or “hurry” means. They can’t totally grasp how their Daddy is also my husband and their Papa is my Daddy! They can’t comprehend why they can’t use my sharp knives, carry their brother around, or stir boiling water on the stove. When it comes to lowering expectations, I need to shift my expectations of my children in the sense that I need to expect them to do things as children do and not as adults. Because they don’t understand time, yelling at them to hurry up when we’re late for school means nothing. They just don’t get it and I can’t expect them to yet! I’m learning that lowering expectations isn’t a lazy or negative thing. It simply means viewing situations and circumstances through the eyes of a 4 or 1 year old who is experiencing the world for the very first time. They have no prior experience.
My daughter just came in and interrupted me:
“When I’m 46 can I have my birthday? And remember, I want a flamingo birthday!”
Enough said! They’re children and all too soon they’ll grasp time, relationships and danger. For now I’m going to expect them to be children and start planning that flamingo birthday party!!