I’m constantly telling parents to listen to their “guts” as far as their kids go. This seems so simple, but our tricky brains will want to talk us out of those perfect intuitive feelings we have about our kids or even our dogs.
The other night, I just couldn’t sleep. I tossed. I turned. By two-o’clock I was worn out, but something was nagging at me. Something told me to just stay awake. I took a deep breath and headed downstairs to get a glass of milk. That’s when I found our beloved border collie having a seizure of some sort. He was twitching and shaking. I dropped to my knees and shook him.
Nothing happened. Slim is old. Really old. At fifteen, he’s deaf and couldn’t hear me. I shook him harder. Then he went completely still and his tongue lolled out of his mouth. He stopped breathing, and I figured it was just his time. I waited and nothing happened. His chest was eerily still, his tongue not moving. But something told me to shake him one more time. I listened to my “gut” and gave him one last shake. Can you believe his eyes popped open and he acted like nothing had happened? He wagged his tail and looked me straight in the eye.
You might say that Slim is old and he’ll die soon anyway. You’re right, but as I listen to him bark and watch him run like a pup in the evenings, I guess it just wasn’t his time. I’m sure glad I listened to my “gut” that night, even if it mean having only a few more days with this sweet animal.
You can do the same with your child. Are you getting pressured to put him on medication for ADD/ADHD, but it doesn’t feel right to you? Is she smart, but the teacher is recommending retention? Does he come home from school upset and complaining about a mean teacher, but whenever you’ve met this person, he/she is nice? Do you wonder if home-schooling would be better for your child, but have talked yourself out of it even though your child is miserable? Do you think you don’t have enough money for private school but you’re driving a new car?
All of these are viable questions, and only you can listen to your “gut” about the answers. Here’s the thing. They’re always there if you listen. I’m sure glad I listened all the times I was raising my kids. I promise you, whenever I didn’t, it turned out in disaster.
I would still be mourning Slim’s death had I not listened to my “gut” that night. As it is, I’ve been given the gift of more days with this very special member of our family.