Ours is an impatient world. We want everything to happen immediately. We love get-rich-quick stories and dream of winning the lottery. We wait for friendships to boom immediately, or not at all. We don’t allow ourselves or each other time to make mistakes. We have become too impatient to even slice our own cheese.
I want to teach my kids that they don’t have to be immediately brilliant at everything they do. Even when they want to be great at something, they must learn that greatness comes incrementally, like a sand castle that is built one shovelful at the time.
Of course, in this day and age you don’t have to take this approach to sand castle building. You can just go to Alibaba and buy a mold, which will create the sand castle of your dreams within minutes. But I want my children to know that in my eyes this easy, effortless, perfectly formed sandcastle does not have half the value of the crumbling, formless sand castle they formed with little hands and big effort.
But they don’t really need me telling them this. Children are smart enough to be proud of the things they have created, unless someone tells them otherwise. This pride is a necessary ingredient to keep them learning. It gives them time to grow and space to make mistakes.
I am impatient to learn how to write better. I don’t want to learn how to walk, I want to run, fast! I hate making mistakes and falling.
My children could probably teach me a thing or two.