The Joys of Wild Things

This week I write about the benefits of raising ‘spirited’ children, the kind of kids who think food is best used in science experiments and chairs are for gymnastics, not for sitting.

I wrote this with tongue firmly in cheek, but I do appreciate my kids’ wild sides even when they wear me out. I was discussing this with someone on Twitter today: it can be draining to raise young kids who constantly question everything and test limits and insist on trying everything for themselves… but those are all qualities I want them to have when they’re older. So we nurture them now even it it means creating more work for ourselves.

It’s both hilarious and exhausting to raise a three-year-old who insists that there’s a beluga whale in the lake five minutes from our house, or that he is absolutely certain it is Tuesday even though he cannot tell time or recite the days of the week.

But I love his imagination, and the strength of his convictions.

Sometimes they surprise us. Tonight I gave the Mastermind a piece of asparagus and he ate the whole thing without a word of complaint. Usually if I ask him to try a new food there are many tears involved. But tonight he just shrugged and ate it.

Then he went outside and chopped things with an axe for an hour. My wife looked out the window and saw him cut a hole in the snow, then he did a headstand in the snow. Why? Who knows. Because he could, I guess.  Wild Things don’t need reasons.

Wild Things


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