What Matters

It doesn’t matter, we say, he’s not dying.  We’ve always said that about the boys, whatever it is it doesn’t matter.  It doesn’t matter if he never speaks, it doesn’t matter how long he wears a diaper.  It doesn't matter if he talks too much, it doesn't matter if watches television. 
It doesn’t matter. And then in the next breath, in that way that we categorize our children even as we tell ourselves we shouldn’t, we make it matterHow many animal sounds do one year olds know?  I wonder if he should be able to write his name better?  He seems really coordinated with that hammer, doesn't he?!  Do you think he should understand money?  Is this fever something to worry about?  Sometimes we get hung up on things that really aren't matters of life and death.  Not much is, actually. 
A few weeks ago an old lady at the library judged him to be bossy, saying "He likes to be in charge of everything, doesn't he?"  Oh dear, she's right, he does, I worried for a moment.  And then I remembered he's just three. 
"He's an intense child," someone recently suggested.  The comment certainly resonated, but it did not withstand scrutiny.  And if it did, it wouldn't matter.  
They're living.  That matters.


Christy said...

That's right. And he is three. Three year olds are bossy. And so are 10 year olds! :)

The Wendels said...

Your little three year old has been through more in his short life than most adults and I think he's dealt with it better than most adults would, thanks to wonderful parents!

rht said...

It ALL matters with your children.

I wish I could remember names well enough to credit the author who wrote,"All that really matters isn't matter."

Tiff said...

Oh, Jenni, you speak to my heart. You know what matters.

To the judgy-judy: all boys are bossy. Duh.

And that sock monkey sweater? Love.