Tuesday, January 29, 2013

What's trust got to do with it?

       Jacques Cousteau was a brilliant cinematographer and documentary maker. He has possibly thousands of real-life instances documented and showing all throughout the world. He brought to life, in the click of a TV button, the world of aquatic nature. And yet, we never did see him attempt to brush the teeth of a great white shark. Or wrestle that sea lion out of the orca whale's mouth. And why not?

       It seemed unfair that that poor, cute fluffy sea lion had to fall prey to that evil, giant, black and white monster...

       Trust is an integral part of the child care process. It takes restraint on the part of the parent/child care worker, in order for nature to take it's course and make what is going to happen as natural a sequence of events as humanly possible. Right or wrong in the adult mind doesn't matter when it comes to really listening, observing and allowing the child to grow at their own rate, both intellectually and emotionally.

As adults, we tend to stray from trust easily. It has been engineered out of us through time at work, contest, unwilling compromise in faulty relationships, etcetera, etcetera, ad infinitum.

"Waitaminute, Mr. CaveDad! I absolutely do not agree! I trust my children wholeheartedly! They're my children, after all!"

Is that what you were thinking? Perhaps it is. Perhaps it isn't. I can say, having been one of those parents, that was what I was thinking when I was told I didn't trust my children.

       The situation here is a matter of mixed intention. While it is easy to jump to the defense and say things like "Of course, I trust my children.", it isn't always a practice that we, as parents and child care workers, stick to repeatedly. It just isn't how the world looks at children.

       The world sees the child as the baby. Unbeknown to even themselves, they have no semblance of reasoning capabilities beyond crying, throwing and defecating themselves. The media world has taught the adult world that you must be the voice of reason for your child, because they don't know any better.

This is an assumption that needs to be rethought. If you sit down on the sidelines, and truly watch two children that haven't the capacity to speak clearly their intentions, you will be lucky enough to witness natural communication/decision-making in it's purest form. The key to all of this divinity lies in our ability to TRUST the child.

       When we put trust into people, we see what would have naturally occurred, without resistance. The same goes for children. As long as there is no acts of violence involved (that is where we intervene, gently and calmly, with only the intention of not allowing the violence to happen - "I won't allow you to hit him/her"), children have their own necessary desire to obtain structure in their world. You will witness it, surely. Interference only muddles their concentration on what is happening directly in their minds. This is where we, as adults, have the ability to stretch and witness nature taking it's course as it should.

       When we just "let go", and let life happen, especially when it comes to your children, they are allowed to create their own solutions to life's problems. It allows them the respect that, ultimately, you wish to instill in them towards you.


Trust is the key to giving the gift of respect to the child.

So, next time you hear screaming from your children, and there isn't any unnecessary (IE: violent/unsafe) contact happening, just "let go" and observe from a safe distance (safe distance = a point away from the children where, if need be, you can cross and intervene, if violence/unsafe acts are about to occur). Watch and trust that they will figure it out. Whether it's two children squabbling over a toy, one child throwing a tantrum, a child struggling to fit a puzzle piece in place. Let go, give respect to them as people in this world, and trust that they have their own idea of how to resolve and complete their own scenarios.

One day, they will have to own up to their own actions.

Why not let it be today? 

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