Another cool thing about being an involved parent is, that while you see your children develop their personalities and characters – you discover their strengths.
Maybe your child is surprisingly good at drawing. Or strangely expert at counting things. Or unusually advanced at organising the other kids in the playground.
No matter what it is, seeing your child use his strengths to succeed, is awesome.
As I mentioned once before, it’s an intoxicating mixture of pride, shock, euphoria, happiness and terror that is parenthood.
My 2.5yo son Sean, has always been particularly receptive to sounds.
First it manifested in a way that I believed to be disadvantageous. He was overly sensitive to sounds, and would cry at every strange noise in the house. I instantly regarded him as being “high maintenance” and “too sensitive”. Then I realised that I should look at it in a positive light.
Over the years, I’ve slowly seen how this sensitivity has become part of his strengths.
First I noticed that he could recognise and recall all the phonic sounds of the alphabet, just by listening repeatedly to me.
Then I noticed that Sean responds really well to music, in a way quite unlike his big brother. He just has this groove for rhythm, songs, rhymes, beats, tunes, sounds. Sean “gets” it. Music really does engage his body, mind and spirit. Music and sounds seem to be his thing. And he’s been a great dancer since young!
He also responds really well to language. After some reflection, we’ve decided to teach our kids Chinese, by trying to speak it ourselves! We borrowed a Learn Basic Chinese CD and play it in the evenings. And we all practice together as a family.
Both our boys have picked it up really well. But as I have revealed before, Sean’s pronunciations are absolutely outstanding! I think it would be easy to attribute it to his age (learning a new language is easier for younger children), but as a parent, I KNOW this is his strength.
In fact, I’m the ONLY ONE IN THE WHOLE WORLD who knows his strengths. Not him, or the babysitter, or his brand new teacher at the start of school.
The development of his strengths, right now, is my responsibility.
Will he grow up using it confidently and expertly, encouraging and inspiring others?
Or will he use it in vain, looking down on his peers and causing misery upon others?
Or will it lay redundant at the bottom of his priorities? Forgotten. Untapped. Meaningless?
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