Tackling one challenge at a time

October 31, 2012, 2 Comments

KB’s sensitive nature sometimes gets the better of him, but when the storm dies down, and the storm is usually within him, he rationalises.

The day KB was at his music class. He was picked to be the first to play a solo piece with several others in class playing after him. This was not uncommon, he is often picked to go first probably because of where he was seated. But that day, I came in to the class later and he did not sit in his usual seat. he suddenly felt overwhelmed. For whatever reason unknown to me. He decided that he will not play. Not because he did not know, but he just did not want to. So the teacher walked over and coaxed him to go for it.

He played (under pressure I guess) and did well. He played steadily and finished the first half of the piece well.  Then out of the blue he started to cry and became upset. He said he failed and he closed his book and said he will not play anymore.  I was at my wits end. Battling background piano sounds, I fought to get him to calm down and straighten up. There is no problem and he should not make a big deal out of it. I was getting frustrated at the storm that was brewing within him. I made a wild guess, he started to tinkle with the notes at the beginning and intentionally played the wrong notes. The teacher walked over and asked if he was nervous before telling him “you know how to play right?” which I guess added undue pressure.

I spoke with a friend who knows music and she says that my son thinks and feels deeply for his age. I had to agree. I know where he got that from. And because of that, situations that may seemed neutral or common for average folks may seemed overwhelming for him. He was created that way and I guess it is for me to find out how God desires for him to be used and glorify him.

Shortly, KM mustered enough courage under my barrage of quick retort “Be courageous, straighten your attitude and wipe away those tears.” I am not sure if those words were fillers that echoed in that span of empty space or words of helplessness. Lesson resumed for him as he re-opened his book and flipped to the page teacher asked for. The class had been playing for no more than 10 minutes when his bench suddenly came down with a loud “boom”! Everyone in class turned and look at him.  A little boy of about 2 years old, flipped the lever under his seat and brought it down several levels. The mother was most apologetic and I had not made a big deal out of it.

But I guess that kind of broke the straw on the camel’s back. He broke down in a most bitter way, fighting with all his might to control his tears. That seems too painful for him and for me, so I led him out of the class to comfort him. After about 15mins, he tells me, he was embarrassed.  I gave him all I know about being courageous in the Bible and told him that he need not be embarrass. He is not at fault that the bench came down. I told him that God gave him the gift of music and the enemy is not happy. So he had to persevere and not give up. If he is discouraged, he should ask the enemy to get lost!

We returned to class harmoniously after about 15mins of cooling off.

Some days later, I was concerned  if the challenges of learning music would interfere with his love for it. Challenges will come and that is life’s greatest lesson, but challenges should be allowed at the right time and right dosage. I am not sure if this was something he would be able to withstand. So I decide to let him make the decision if he would like to continue with the class or not.

One day later, he tells me he wants to continue with the class. Yesterday in the bus, he tells me this “Mummy, when I grow up, I don’t want to be so easily embarrassed. Because when I am embarrassed I cannot do things.” He said with such an upbeat heart, I was really really happy for him.

I was totally taken aback by such clear thinking and resolute from a 5-yr old boy. My son, a perfectionist in many aspect is not that easily defeated afterall. How can I not honour his will to fight this?  As a mother, I want to be behind him all the way.

More important than getting the right notes, or to continue with the class is his willingness to still keep trying.  Sometimes our will alone is not enough and we need divine help to get us through difficulties. Life’s lesson is never easy. Part of being victorious is identifying our obstacles and striving to overcome it.

As parents, we too are always on an never-ending learning journey. To understand our children and to adjust our expectations. Unsaid words could be more powerful than what is being said. I am thankful he came to his own conclusion this way. I would never had pushed for my own agenda then to have conviction come from within him.  To have arrived at a decision, he must have given more thought about it.   This week we are memorising  “I am more than a conqueror…” together.  Romans 8: 28.  I think we both needed it.

2 Responses to “Tackling one challenge at a time”

  1. Eileen says:

    I felt that this apply to adult too. The walk with God is not easy but never give up cos God never give up on us.

    My daughter has such problem too she will keep thinking when she do something she will feel is not good enough but I will keep telling this is good but we will look into more next time as for now we should admire the finish (as in for today) then next time touch on it again. God taught me nobody is perfect except him.

    My daughter needs a lot of encouragement when she felt she can’t do it and depend on the situation
    Like swimming, during learning to float she haven’t try she said she can’t so I try to talk to her but she is listening to fear rather than me ( sometime this is really like us, listening to our fear but not God) In the end I tell her ok… let’s go home and we not coming anymore. I told her if you are afraid of water then is no point of learning swimming. In the end she tried and Yes she can do it. But I pray when her next lesson and told her God is giving you His encouragement and strength.

    Give up- I love this!
    I told her when she dont want to attend her ballet or give up on trying on certain things that she can’t got it right. I mean give up half way. That is the learning attitude… I told her to look around her, did God create the world half and did God create you half way? She ans, no. Yes so we should not give up half way. I told her I will help you in you face problem and God is the provider for all, pray to God cos mummy will also pray to God to ask Him to guide me how to you and guide you.

    This is amazing! a lot of things I really learn from God! God help me to understand why He created the world and help me to see things which my own human eye and knowledge can’t understand and see.

    God Bless

    • admin says:

      tks for sharing Eileen. I learn that courage is learnt, one challenge at a time. A rubber band when over-stretched breaks, parents need to know how far to stretch and when to stop. Keep on encouraging your girl!

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