Life lessons for kids are not those we teach them by narrating a story or telling them how to think about things. Rather, these lessons are those they earn from their own experience. Although no parent wants this, breaking a limb (complete with a long recovery) can be such a life lesson: all of a sudden, everything that came easy seems heard — walking, showering, getting onto and off of a bus. Favorite pastimes such as soccer, basketball and roller-skating are unobtainable and time stretches on after school and on weekends. You have to get creative about filling that time and keeping life fun.
Since Beckett broke his leg last December skiing, I’ve been proud of how the little guy handled it. Don’t get me wrong, he did get grumpy, especially at the beginning when he was in pain. Vacation days that were supposed to be fun-filled ended up being endlessly boring, and he even got tired of watching movies on Netflix.
Once he got back into school in January, though, his complaints pretty much ceased. Beckett became skilled at giving himself a sponge bath with a wet, soap-filled towel, making his way around on crutches (including getting up and down stairs), and eventually at walking while jumping on one foot and dragging the other casted leg behind him, without putting weight on it. In other words, he adapted, accommodated and found his own solutions to his predicament independently.
None of us want our children to experience hardship, and most of our kids are lucky enough to not know real hardship in life. That being said, a bit of what I’ll dare to call “heavy inconvenience” from time to time is not a bad thing. It teaches our kids to be flexible, to adapt to changed circumstances, and to overcome small hurdles.
With such lessons learned, a happy day rolled around the week before last. Beckett’s cast was due to be sawed off! The wonderful orthopedist we had seen employed a circular, gently-griding saw to slice through the plaster, and lifted the cast off. In this photo you can see the saw in circular motion and Beckett with his usual easy grin.
Mommy did film the entire experience and I’m anxious to post that so that you all can get a sense of how LIBERATING it was for Beckett to get that yicky, sticky, dirty cast off. Stay tuned for that, posting on the CloudMom Facebook page.
Describe a “heavy inconvenience” or “small hardship” your child has faced and how it taught them something about life. I’m anxious to hear.
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