Friday, April 20, 2007

Sunday Scribbling: Rooted

This week the prompt over at Sunday Scribblings is "rooted."
One thing that makes me feel rooted is family. We moved several times when I was a child, but I don't remember the experiences as being negative. I was secure in my family. There were good reasons for our moves and my security helped overcome my anxiety about change.
I am blessed to be part of a family who I genuinely enjoyed spending time with. And still do. My parents enjoyed us girls, and in turn, we enjoyed them and each other. Not only did my parents provide me with an upbringing of unquestionable love, firm structure, and lots of fun times, but I know that their own parents provided that support for them as well. Having all this as my roots gives me confidence along with something to live up to as I parent my own child. I don't have to figure it out from scratch.
Now that I am a mom I am sensitive to this idea of cultivating a child who feels secure. I know that my daughter is too young to remember all our day to day activities--in fact she will have no memory of them at all. (I was telling my mom how K called balls of green Play-Doh "grapes" as she played with them the first time. I didn't know I too did the same thing when I was first introduced to Play-Doh.) But since she was born, K's daddy and I have been growing in her the knowledge that she can trust us completely, giving her a firm base to grow from. Roots. At barely two years old, she is very much under our care and her impressions, though wordless, are deep.
I have read many analogies of children to young plants, and I think they are true. In my experience with gardening, I know how young plants need extra care. They are more susceptible to damage than mature plants, and the best way to ensure that they grow strong and healthy is to encourage them to grow deep roots. Strong root systems make strong plants.
So it is with young children. It seems to me that more and more, society exposes them to what they are not equipped to handle. Cartoons are filled with violence. Even TV itself can be damaging, disrupting normal operations in young brains. Toys, filled with lights, bells and whistles, do all the playing for them. Children come to school unable to concentrate because they come from homes filled with strife and chaos. How are children supposed to develop learning and imagination, thrive and bloom, when they have so much to contend with?
As a stay-home mom, though my job can be a tedious grind and I wonder sometimes how much good I really do, I know I have one of the most important jobs in the world. It bugs me when people say, "It's so nice that you're able to stay at home." I am not "able" to, we make it happen. Our child is more important than having a fancy car or all the latest gadgets. To raise our "seedling" into a thriving, blooming, happy "plant", we first need to give her the chance to grow roots. This takes time that is not rushed, some quiet and nurturing. Though she will later not remember her day to day experiences, they still teach her that she is loved. Being guided and molded by ones she can count on provides her with "underground support" when she begins to grow out into the world.


Anonymous said...

this idea of cultivating a child who feels secure.

With that idea as the root of your thinking, I'm sure that your seedling will thrive and be a beautiful flower! Great post.

Crafty Green Poet said...

I don't have children but I think if you do have them, yes they are more important than gadgets and you are right to make it possible to stay at home with her.

Brian said...

Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

In my opinion, any parent who stays home is doing a very hard job. Sometimes, due to other circumstances, both have to work. It sounds like you both have a firm layer of earth in which to help your seedling grow. :)

Rob Kistner said...

Nice piece of writing. I think the most important ingredient in making a child feel is the sense of ever-present abiding love. To know that the love and acceptance are there, unquestioning and available.

Enjoyed what you wrote.

--and so it goes--

strauss said...

As a fellow SAHM I agree with you that it is a hard job, it is a constant job, with richrewards. It is a financial struggle being on one wage, but despite the daily battles,I am thankful that I am able to stay home, because some people woudl like to, but are truely unable to; a reality that must frustrate them no end.

Patois said...

How wonderful that the security you got from your parents is translating to security for your own child.

I think I'll stay out of the "able" issue.

Jennifer said...

This is a great post, and as someone who visited your house when I was a kid, I can attest to the loving home that you grew up in! It was wonderful.. and after visiting your home...You are following in your parents footsteps!

I,too, have been irked at the "able to stay at home" comment...We make it happen as well and although it is a struggle at times, you cannot put a price on the rooted little beings that we are raising...

Here's to our rooted kids! :)

Liza's Eyeview said...

I love reading this post. It is a testimony of what a family means to us..and how it helps us to be grounded (rooted). Wonderful post!

Anonymous said...

Very lovely post, and every word is true. We have much to be thankful for.

[K - the middle sister]