I am an over protective mother and also want the best for my kids. But I’ve realized as adults, we take for granted everything we know & tend to assume the kids know what we know too. Let me explain. Last year, I was on a resort with my sons and they were having fun in the pool. It was his birthday so he just turned 8yrs. We’ve been in pools before but he doesn’t know how to swim yet. He is just learning from teaching himself but umm No, I don’t trust him as he tells me “I can swim” LOL. So I gave him the rules: “Do not pass the 3.5 ft deep section!” There were other adults & kids in the pool but I was done having my water fun. So I’m relaxing on the beach chairs reading my book but both my kids are in my view. Sure enough my oldest, Isiah, is playing with a boy around his height. Everything is cool. Now this sun is glaring & when you mix that with relaxation, my eyes suddenly close!! I fell asleep but before then my youngest is tired of the pool too & lays on the beach chair beside me.
Now it was either a motherly instinct or DIVINE intervention!! The minute I open my eyes & realized I fell asleep, I locate Isiah. He’s now crossed the 3.5ft, heading TOWARDS the 4ft section & I jump up!! I get close to him but still not into the water to see what EXACTLY was he planning on doing?? He now realizes that was a MISTAKE because the water was right by his nose. I can tell Isiah was on his tipy toes but I let him get a quick experience. Then sure enough another adult pushed him back to help him out (as they over heard my concerns telling Isiah going too deep as a non-swimmer). I asked Isiah what did he think he was doing?? I spotted Isiah’s new friend & of course, he’s doing fine!! I asked the boy can you swim? WITHOUT hesitation, he swam to demonstrate he was good! Isiah seen & in that moment I gave him his REAL LIFE LESSON. This boy CAN swim but you can’t to save yourself. Don’t ever follow people & jeopardize your safety!! You’ll end up hurt while they remain safe!!
So sometimes, kids must get their own experiences to understand WHY we tell them to do/not do certain things. If we can supervise them, giving them a taste of what it feels like, then the goal next time (whether I’m around or not), is to CHOOSE to listen to the rules/safety first! I ALWAYS remind my kids: “There are ONLY 2 things that happen when you don’t listen… you either get in trouble OR you get hurt!!”