A key attachment parenting virtue: patience

A most amazing thing has occurred in the last two days: G-, our four year old son, decided that he didn’t want training wheels on his bicycle any more, so he took them off and *instantly* knew how to ride without them. It’s quite a remarkable sequence of events and hard to realize that it’s only been 48 hours when he zips down the driveway, turns onto the sidewalk and confidently rides up to the next driveway to turn around.
More than just bicycling, though, it’s a fine example of one of the secret arts of good parenting: patience. I really do believe that with many transitions, waiting until the child is ready can make things phenomenally easy, so easy that you’ll feel letdown by how easy it is. This ranges from potty training (we’ve always championed “big kid” underwear as an enticement and it’s worked great) to eating certain types of foods, to even going to school.
So the question you should be asking yourself next time you’re interacting with your children: how patient are you? How well are you waiting, relaxing, until the change you seek manifests in your child, and how are you minimizing the never-ending push push push of our culture to have the little folk grow up and be mini-adults?

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