"Patience you must have, young Padawan." (Yoda)
This is a tough lesson...for me, for the boys, for the kids I teach.
There's a sense of immediacy in this day and age...I call it "The Microwave Theory".
How many of us stop a microwave with a few seconds left, because "it's hot enough" or "that should be done now"? I do it...Mommy does it...We want what we want...and we want it now. Right away. We are, I believe, more impatient than ever.
Texting? When I see that someone's read my text but hasn't replied? I get impatient.
Emailing? When I'm expecting a response from someone, and it's been a few days? I get impatient...and worried...and anxious...and nervous...all things that lead to stress and frustration. I don't want that...but how to stop the cycle?
My boys are learning the importance of patience. When Dude was a mere 2 years of age, he could say the word, "buffering" when youtube wouldn't load fast enough - with the little beachball circling incessantly whilst loading Super Grover or Blue's Clues.
Technology is a blessing and a curse.
When teaching my students about Inquiry Based Learning, I always ask the following questions:
"When you play a videogame for the first time, what usually happens?" (you die/lose/fail). The real question is: "What do you do next? give up? try again?"
This is life. This is how the real world works. You are presented with a challenge, an obstacle, a question. In some situations, the answer, the choice, is clear. But in many other circumstances, the decision may not be obvious or apparent. However, in every situation, a choice or decision must be made. You must commit to one thing or another. Each choice has its consequence...and you must live with the result. Many times, the choice is easy - succeed or fail...do or do not. Most times, you don't get a do-over or a mulligan if you make the wrong choice. "I could try the video game level again...or I could quit." "I could make a left turn instead of taking a right." "I could buy the blue shirt or red shirt." "Latte or regular coffee?" These are the easy choices.
But what about when you're dealing with a person - or persons? How do you deal with the fact that decisions are being made by those you're working with, those around you, those whose choices will directly affect (if not influence) the consequences of the choices you make? Furthermore, how do you teach children who, oftentimes, expect immediacy from each other and instantaneous results from themselves and their choices? I can't count as high as the number of times students have asked if their tests are marked...on the same day they took the test! Patience. It once was a gift, a talent, a virtue. Now, it's a skill to be taught.
Next on the menu...exploring how living with a Mommy with PMDD can remove choices from the boys and I...and what those consequences can look like.