Monday, May 12, 2014

The Difference Between Splits and Spit is an "L"

I want to be able to do the splits, but I don't have the patience to stretch daily.

There's something about the lack of immediate results that greatly affects my ability to push through a tedious task. Trust me, I know it's a personality flaw.

Silas recently started learning to spit. At first I was thrilled, because we were brushing our teeth and he was trying to imitate me; a great next step for him in his own personal care.

Then he realized that this wonderful trick could be applied to everything he put in his mouth. Now he was chomping onto toys and spitting them out. Now he was taking big sips of water and spraying it on the floor, nearly choking on his laughter.

I know that I have to be patient. It will take many explanations that we spit in the sink while brushing, but not on the floor while drinking. There will be messes. I get Silas to help clean up his messes in an attempt to gently rebuke him (but the kid really likes blotting up spills with paper towel so I'm worried this might encourage him).

Just like the splits, I know I have to work with Silas every day as he learns to navigate the basic activities we take for granted (brushing our teeth, using the toilet, putting on clothes). All of these have a vague starting point and a defined ending point, but the steps in between are brutally slow going and the day to day changes are essentially non existent. Only when I stop to think back to a few months ago do I realize how far Silas has come in any of his skills.

I am not a particularly patient person - I am all about the destination rather than the journey - but hopefully teaching Silas will help me to change my viewpoint. And maybe one day, I'll look back to a time when I thought I was incapable of doing the splits.


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