Explaining why she started ‘Nurturing Thursday’, Becca Givens writes:
‘Our culture tells us we need to be special and above average to feel good about ourselves. Yet, it is not possible for all of us to be above average at the same time.’
If we could then ‘Above Average’ would be the average ~ and I can’t even work out where the logical progression of that ideology is leading. The thought is ~ literally ~ depressing. But I don’t mean to spread despondency ~ after all this is ‘Nurturing Thursday’, designed to inject weekly shots of positivity into the blogosphere.
As every doting grandparent will tell you ~ each child is different and special. For instance, I am blessed with twin super~heroes and a princess:
(Yeah, I know the boys are toting weapons ~ but that’s a different debate. And I encourage them to aim at crochet cushion targets, rather than at each other’s heads. I’m not entirely successful ~ it’s a ‘man~thing’, so I’m told and I can’t argue with that. Trust me, I’ve tried.)
So how do we root this innocent wonder, where the cardboard tube from an empty toilet roll is transformed into a cuff which shoots imaginary webs at invisible ‘baddies’? Or a beeee~oootiful bracelet, encrusted with crayoned~on jewels.
Is it possible to inspire our young to attain their full potential as adults, without imposing artificially constructed standards, moving goal~posts, meaningless comparisons, which ~ we know from our own experience ~ won’t make them feel good about themselves……or others? Quite the opposite, in fact.
Clearly the current system is flawed ~ but maybe we can turn it around. In the words of William Martin :
‘Do not ask your children
to strive for extraordinary lives.
Such striving may seem admirable,
but it is the way of foolishness.
Help them instead to find the wonder
and the marvel of an ordinary life.
Show them the joy of tasting
tomatoes, apples and pears.
Show them how to cry
when pets and people die.
Show them the infinite pleasure
in the touch of a hand.
And make the ordinary come alive for them.
The extraordinary will take care of itself.’
‘If you teach them to achieve
they will never be content.
If you teach them contentment
they will naturally achieve everything.’
(William Martin, The Parent’s Tao Te Ching: Ancient Advice for Modern Parents)
The ‘Nurturing Thursday’ movement is hosted by Becca Givens, author of the inspiring blog ‘On Dragonfly Wings with Buttercup Tea.’ To read more about it, or to find out how you can join in, (the more, the merrier!) please press this link.
Other ‘Nurturing’ contributors are: