I’m conscious that there are things Oscar clearly loves and others he’s not so keen on, but I’m also aware that he’s a toddler and fickle as you like. What works today, wont work tomorrow as it were. So while it might be easy for me to avoid things he hasn’t enjoyed in the past, it’s also somewhat lazy (and if I always did this we could end up doing nothing). He could change his mind about an acticity any day, so it only makes sense for me to give him periodic access to the things he hasn’t enjoyed previously. It’s like me with olives and Edam (now love olives, still can’t stand Edam)
This is how we found ourselves at a Top Banana craft session this morning. We’ve attended various courses and sessions run by our good friend Lana, some have worked for us and some haven’t. This morning was craft based fun, so playdough, painting, sticking and colouring. Seriously what’s not to like? It was a pretty safe bet. Only thing was the class was being held in his favourite place, The Hen House and previous attempts at getting him to focus on something in the party room, when there is all that free ranging soft play the other side of the door have failed dramatically.
So it was with some trepidation that I took him this morning.We arrived a little early, to give him a chance to play as he wanted to, and as Lana really kindly emailed us the list of activities to me last night, I took some time to tell him what was going to happen. And I’m happy to say it wasn’t a disaster. He played with the playdoh for a while and then made a snail, sticking small pieces of card to a paper plate. He’s not used glue before and I think we’ll definitely be investing in some for home!
All in all he lasted 20 minutes of an hour class. I could have tried to hold him in the room, when he really didn’t want to be there any more, but who would have gained from that? I’d given him the access I planned to and it actually wasn’t as awful as it could have been. It didn’t stop me feeling deflated afterwards, sitting alone drinking my coffee. Then I realised I was focussing on what he hadn’t done, when really I should be focussing on what he had done. Which was more than I thought he would. Positive thinking is quite a new thing for me. A year ago, I would have totally just focussed on what we hadn’t achieved. But now, I don’t know, that just feels pointless. Seriously what’s the point on focussing on what wasn’t there? Something that didn’t ever exist? When there’s this concrete thing in front of me, something that does exist?
It’s not always easy and yeah sometimes I still wish he’d do stuff other kids do (or what I think they do – who I am to say what they do is better?). But for now I’m focussing on what he does do. What IS there.
Which today was a feeling of pride and a snail.