3 Ways to Enjoy Each Kid’s New Experiences
Our third and youngest child is now four years old. He is experiencing brand new things and entering brand new stages. Of course, his older brother and sister have gone through these stages before and that’s usually where, as parents, we may get a little bored. When our first child does something, it is usually a big deal to us. We are over the top excited, proud, and we usually show it. But what about child number 2 or 3? Do we react with the same excitement?
If we don’t, what message does that send to him? I caught myself doing this! I realized that I tend to be caught up in my older son’s baseball progress where my younger son’s t-ball is rarely my first question at the dinner table. My excitement for t-ball is not what it was when my older son played. I was making my younger son feel like it wasn’t a big deal. As a result, he was not excited about t-ball; he wanted to play baseball because it appeared that that was where the excitement was.
I felt awful! We have to enjoy the new things for each subsequent child because they need to see our joy for them just like the other kids before them did. I learned I need to appreciate each child at every stage.
Here are 3 ways to enjoy each kid’s new experiences:
1. Watch with Interest.
My son has been watching his older siblings his entire life. He has soaked up all he’s seen them do and now he is getting to do it. I need to make sure I watch him as I watched his siblings and really appreciate with new eyes his growth and success.
2. Refuse to Compare.
Our younger son has an imagination. When he makes a play and describes it to me, he makes it seem like he was Derek Jeter in his prime. I love that confidence and I am glad he was born with it. Several times I have heard parents at the field instruct their child to watch their older brother. It can be hard for a child to compare themselves to a sibling.
3. Share in His Excitement.
Learning and doing new things is fun. My son is excited to do them and, honestly, I am just as excited now that I am tuned in. Hearing the excitement when he says, “Yes!” when we tell him we are going to his game or practice is truly something to appreciate. Lastly, take the older kids to watch the younger when you can. Remember the younger probably always had to go watch them. It helps to build sibling appreciation.
No matter how many times you witness each of your kids go through something, be sure to share in it like it was the first time for you as well. Every experience with them is something to be appreciated.
© 2014 All Pro Dad. All Rights Reserved. Family First, All Pro Dad, iMOM, and Family Minute with Mark Merrill are registered trademarks.
Please share a time when you experienced a first for your kids that was something you really enjoyed and appreciated.