One thing leads to another, right? We learn, and grow, and keep moving on up the ladder. These days even quicker, with more of an instant demand. Often times we are involved in varying accomplishments at any given time. With the revved up world we live in today children are being exposed to countless amounts of societal pressure, forcing a rapid rate of maturity. But what has this done for the greater good of our society? Time seems to no longer be on our side. Kindness and expression of genuine gratitude take too much time, and are been replaced with an extra emoticon! But how does the receiver interpret this, and do they have the extra time to read an instant message? We are peeled away from actively being present. The value of simply observing life unfold has been lost, as instant gratification has become the way of life. 

Who has time to just sit back? 
I do! Archer has given me the gift of time. 
TO BE, to not do, but to be. 
To be silent in my own thoughts and action, to be with him, to be present in his learning, to be aware of tender emergence, and to be an observer of these moments that flash before my eyes. When the pressure exists of doing, and doing, and doing, we forget to slow down and be present. Sure enough we miss moments that would melt our heart and take our breath away. 

For instance, when Archer began moving forward on his elbows. At first I thought, that couldn’t be, how did he get there, and so quickly? It was just a “quick” peek on my phone. With excitement, I resisted the urge to request from him to “do it” again, and instead lay there patiently being with him, syncing our breath, connecting on a level that doesn’t need a signal, but one that exudes pure joy to be. As I reduced all other impacts, he felt my presence and engagement.
He was aware of my time being dedicated to observing him. So what does the little ham do, turns to look at mom, gives her a big cheeser, utters “Mom” and other enunciation communicating to me how exhilarating moving forward felt. He then pushes hard into the ground with his left hand, raising his torso up high enough to peak over his left shoulder and sees the red rope lights lining the baseboard near the dining room table. He sashays his trunk, followed by his legs, lowers back down to both elbows, visually being intrigued by the light he moves in this new direction to explore his own independent movement.
Let me remind you I’m not just referring to the physical movement that is occurring, but also the movement of his emotions and his ability to recognize the thought process it took to get him there. He differentiated between what he already knew how to do a) turn his vision off and blindly roll until he felt the lights, or b) keep all systems linked, coordinate his vision, his choice, and his physical exertion to go beyond his current limits, spurring imagination, and valued his abilities to create a new experience. Yes, he was proud of his outcome! 

As I introduce new experiences into Archer’s tool box (i.e the mapping of his brain) it take time observing to even figure out where to begin. I not only have to take into account his visual needs, but considerably more the time and varying exposure he needs to process each step in achieving the outcome. We were planning for our 5th trip to CA and I really wanted him to get past the sippy cup.  So the week before our departure it was my only goal to introduce the experience of drinking from an open faced cup. It began with the language and question of wanting a drink, after a response I would hold and doing the tipping. Then came the introduction of his own two hands holding, mom still doing the tipping, yet lots of chilling spills down the shirt. I had to remember not to force, reduce my drive of wanting and let him become familiar. I had that open faced cup everywhere we went, made a mental note if I’m thirsty then ask Archer and try. Sometimes he protested (yeah! The 2 year old) and other times he was open to it. If it was plain water I had a small chance of getting that 2nd gulp, in comes the not just 50/50 mix of juice but a heavy dilution just enough to give a sweetness to the lips. We arrived to the sunny state and left the sippy cut behind! Now, a couple weeks out and would you look at him tenderly emerging into an independent drinker!

Have we lost the art of allowing natural experience to feed our brains? We need to have moments that are clear of external riffraff. We need space to settle into the feedback. We must have flexibility of expectations. Can we allow time to let the process unfold? May we all work to BE open to unique possibilities, and accepting of outcomes.

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