Case in point: I went to pick him up at daycare this week and arrived earlier than usual. I hung back to observe how he interacted with the other kids. It’s something I’m curious about but rarely get to see. Normally when either My Fair Lady or I show up, the rest of the parents are in the midst of scooping up their children, so Max is ready to go. But on this day, he and the others were enraptured by what their teacher held. She showed off a small tower comprised of four ladders and a plastic frog was stuck in the middle. The teacher would talk softly to one of the kids and touch the ladders to the top of their head before doing it to the next child.
Max and a little girl stood at the back of the circle of kids, so when it was his turn he gingerly stepped forward. He wasn’t entirely sure but he trusted his teacher not to lead him astray. She touched the item to his head and he pointed at the frog, at which point I’m sure he said, “froggie!” Then it was the little girl’s turn but she was having none of it.
She stepped back and vigorously shook her head side to side. No way! The teacher calmly asked Max if he could convince her that it was alright.
Max looked at the little girl, then reached over and took her hand in his. He had a look on his face that said, “it’s okay, I did it and it’s alright.” He didn’t pull her into the circle either. He gently tugged on her, urging her forward with a sense of caring for the well being of another that I hadn’t seen from him. The girl still wouldn’t do it, so Max let go of her and walked over to the teacher to try and get the froggie out. Yes, he was successful.
That was the point where I stepped to the door and got his attention. He immediately smiled, pointed at me to let the teachers know that he was outta there, then ran to the door. When we got out in the hall, I gave Max a big hug and whispered in his ear, “I’m so proud of you big man. Thank you for being so sweet.” He replied, “I poopie!” and grabbed his crotch.