It's not always easy to figure out when to push children and when to ease up. Here's a little rule I have picked up over the years. I will push our children when they are trying something new. I've found most of our children say "no" to a new experience they are nervous about, a tiny bit scared, concerned about failing or just have no idea what to expect. And here's where my pushing, shoving and 'anything goes' rule applies. 95% of the time I can figure out what my kid will love or detest about their new adventure. So if I am 95% confident my child will smile a little bit at a new experience they are saying "no" to, I'm going to figure out a way to get them there. Take for example yesterday, Murphy has been asked to swim in a swimming event tomorrow. She burst into tears when I told her, instantly I knew I need help getting Murphy to the event. But, she's a pretty good swimmer for a seven year old. I know over 1/2 the families and coaches at the event and I know she will be safe. So I called a friend who knows Murphy and is attending the event. I asked if Murphy could tag along. I explained the situation and how I know Murphy's emotions will be 'at bay' if I' don't take her to the event.' I calmly explained to Murphy she would be picked up at 8AM for the pool. She screamed at me. I stayed calm. I smiled and told her she seems a bit scared, but that Amy (friend) would be picking her up and Bernadette (swim instructor) would be meeting her at the pool. Through the tears and trying not to let me see, she smiled. Then she raced all over the house collecting her stuff. We taught her how to use Teddy's bike lock (she's being picked up on her bike). You see, I knew . . . I knew those initial emotions weren't the permanent ones. I don't think her fears and emotions are over. But I have helped her HELP HERSELF get over the initial fear. When she gets to the pool and sees all the kids ready to race. She is going to get nervous again. But, she can handle this, I know it. I won't be there for her to run to, pitch and fit and bail out. That's OK, because she is safe and in very good hands. 🎈 You may be thinking, why am I not taking Wiggy myself? I am that mom who brings out all of my kids emotions (good and bad). And when nerves come into play I have found I am better away from the sidelines, rather than on them. Does this bum me out? No, I'm happy my kids show me their emotions. And I'm happy I have the strength to step away when I should. Am I bummed I'm not their to support them? Yes and no. Yes, because I love being with my kids. But no, because I am really happy, proud and excited when our children find their successes and achievements without me holding their hand. Now here's the kicker . . . . I AM OK WITH WHATEVER UNFOLDS at the swimming event today. Today it is about the path that Wiggy takes to get there, not the end result. Although I do hope she comes home with a smile.