My two-year-old and I have a tradition of taking a walk down the block after dinner, and this always turns into a stick-picking-up fest. We always come home with about a bushel of sticks tucked into our pockets and under our arms. Tonight, he came to a great big branch and I jumped right on him (I can be SUCH a know-it-all): “Honey, that one’s a little too big.” He asked me to carry it. Feeling lazy, I white-lied: “Honey, that one’s even too big for Mama.” Not to be deterred, he picked up the whole dang branch. By himself. And carried it for almost a full block. Dragging, scraping, grunting, and groaning, but carrying it, when I would have sworn he wouldn’t even be able to pick it up.
I underestimate him all the time.
I underestimate me all the time.
What’s the worst that could usually happen? Sure, I might have to drag, scrape, grunt, and groan my way through something, but how will I ever know whether I can do it if I always start out with, “Honey, that one’s a little too big”?
Eventually, little boy arms get tired, and my son had to hand me the branch, which I was pleased to carry home for him. Sometimes we might take on something that’s a little too big and have to hand it off to someone else or ask for help. I love how kids below a certain age are never prideful about that. I love their audacity in taking on new challenges. I love that my son ignored my wimpy protestations tonight. I’ll love it if tomorrow I haven’t lost my motivation to start picking up more sticks in life… and deciding after I try whether or not they’re too big.