Friday, January 28, 2011

Jan 28th

The power of the word 'can't'.

Lu loves the water.  Like most children - stands there shivering, blue lips and still wants to be in it.  Place her in a heated pool in 30 degree temperatures and she's in her element (conditions I much prefer as a mama, to be honest).


Today, we were playing in the kiddies pool.  Lu started bouncing (as you do) and due to the gentle slope of the bottom of the pool, very quickly found herself bouncing with her head almost submerged.  On lifting her up and allowing the spit and water to splutter out, she immediately tells me to put her down (quite sternly actually).

 Now this happened twice!  I am very grateful that it wasn't enough to scare her out of the water (and for my cautious child, this was quite astonishing to me).  Although it really did highlight to me just how helpless she is in the water.  And it scares me.

 So I decided to bring up the issue of swimming.  Learning how to flip and float on her back and a doggie paddle.  She thinks it's all a bit of a joke and tells me flat out "I can't".  Now if there is one word in our vocabulary I abhor, it's the word "can't".  I think it started with my mother saying to me "there's no such thing as can't" - which I will always be eternally grateful to her for instilling in me.

 My own later learnings about the power of manifestation have only strengthened my resolve to remove that word from my vicinity.  I must admit, I badgered Lu a bit this afternoon about practicing.  She continued to grump at me (in between squeals of delight at our play and her environment) and tell me "I can't!".  So I chose to reframe it.

 I asked her not to say "can't" anymore, because she can, it's only that she doesn't want to.  And that's okay.  So, after a couple of reminders, when I asked her to swim, she changed "I can't" to "I don't want to".  Which is a perfectly acceptable answer. 

I want my child to know she can do anything.  Anything at all, if she chooses to and focuses on it.  But I also want her to know that if she doesn't want to do something, then that is perfectly acceptable and must be respected.  So in order to achieve anything you want in your life, you must first change your language.  And there just ain't no place in the business of achieving goals, for the word 'can't'.

And one day, with a little luck (and a smidgen of parental persuasion), Lu may just take me up on my offer of helping her learn to swim *smile*.

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