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Kids Say the Darndest Things

I like to watch videos that people share of their kids responding to certain questions they are asked. I get a real chuckle out of some of them. I actually included many such funny comments in the back end of my children's book "The Day I Gave Mad Away."

I was recently watching one of those funny videos where the dad was filming his 4 year old daughter coming in from the backyard. She said to her father "There's a friggin' mouse in the back yard."

Now, on the surface, that seems funny, right? And it is, in a certain respect. However, we need to dig a little deeper here to see just what's going on when a child comes up with such a comment. I am not trying to be a downer here. I am working to illustrate a certain point.

I have had parents act shocked hearing certain things come out of their child's mouth, when I have heard the very same thing come out of theirs. Of course, children don't just learn from their parents. They learn from their friends, their teachers, their caregivers and so on.

Now, when I say learn, I really mean mimic. Children learn through living example - they mimic what they hear. They mimic tones of voices and facial expressions. They mimic negative reactions. They mimic everything. So what we call "originality" in our kids is really a hodge-podge mixture of mimicked traits and expressions. There may be a certain originality and uniqueness to that mixture in every child, wherein no other child has the exact mix of mimicry as they do, but if we look closely at it, we can see that there isn't anything truly original about them at all. How can anything borrowed be original? Mimicry is borrowing. Original means "first - present or existing from the beginning?"

It should be shocking to us when we hear something like that 4-year old child saying "friggin mouse." It should shock us to the core of ourselves as in "My God, what else have they picked up from me?" We have no idea until they say that darndest thing. Why? Because most of the time, we aren't aware of ourselves when we speak. We aren't aware that our child is absorbing not only everything that comes out of our mouths, but every facial expression, and every negative reaction. And I mean every. That's not an exaggeration.

Kids Say What Has Been Said. Kid's Act What What Has Been Acted.

One of my very first blogs was about the importance of owning our own attention. If you haven't read that blog, I encourage you to do so. Without the proper use of our attention, all that we can become is a Master of Mimicry. We can't bring anything new into this world that desperately needs it.

As a parent, if I am fully attentive in my child's presence, I am aware of what my face is doing, if there is tension in it. I'm aware of the words that are coming out of my mouth so that those words are not harmful in any way. I'm aware of everything that is moving through me inwardly that may be pressuring me to move fast, say that unkind thing or give "that look".

We all came into this world with rules that we didn't give ourselves. And because we haven't questioned those rules, we continue to do the darndest thing...the repetitive thing, the mimicked thing...

Imagine giving your child a new set of rules that will make them a truly unique and original individual as they were intended to be.

Presence is the only way to give our children something new in their life. Why is that? Because when we do the same old thing, react in the same old way, say the same negative comments, blame others for the way that we feel, turn to ourselves for answers to what ails us, things never change. Clearly, we can see that.

When we agree to be present with our child, that "same old reaction, that same old comment, that same blame game, etc. is sacrificed by waiting instead for a new answer from a level of consciousness above ours. The old things must pass before anything new can be received, otherwise we continue to feed the same old, same old.

Be a warrior and raise a truly original and unique child. That would be the true darndest thing.

Photo by Naira Babayan on Unsplash

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