Jun 11, 2014

Teaching Our Kids Not to Quit

I am over the top, ridiculously proud of my daughter today. We've come a long way with our oldest daughter this year. Isabella is not the kind of kid who likes to try new things or take chances. She is the kind of kid who wants to quit when things get hard or she doesn't do it perfectly.

I cannot tell you how annoying it is to see my perfectionist personality go to my daughter.

This year my daughter started dance classes. She loved taking dance right up to recital time. Suddenly she hated dance and never wanted to practice her numbers and I found myself butting heads with a very strong willed child.

Exactly 5 days before the recital, Isabella declared that she was quitting and not going to dance ever again. Fabulous! That was the moment that I walked away from her. No good was going to come from me being in the same room as that child! My husband was able to get her to open up and Isabella didn't want to dance since she didn't have the routine memorized. Hello, that is what the practice is for kid!

Later I told her that quitting was an option and that she would be on stage standing there or dancing but she would be on stage. She would also attend all the rehearsals and practice every night. Which she did and once she knew quitting wasn't an option she wasn't such a pill about it. In the end she had fun and did a great job. We were very proud of her. She told me that she was glad that she didn't quit and that she couldn't wait until next year.


A real lesson was learned that day.

After dance was over, she wanted to join running club. We agreed but we told her that just like dance she had to finish what she started. Now running club isn't a huge commitment being a 6 week program, but I knew it was going to get less fun as it got hotter.

Not only did she not try to quit on us, she asked us to help her train for the big race at the end of the year. Every night I've been running with her, with Daddy filling in a few times. I've decided not to take offense to the fact that she preferred to run with daddy who was "faster on the hills." Brat!

Today was the big race and Molly and I were there to cheer her on! She was so excited and it was really fun watching her with her friends.

Brag Alert!

My sweet girl came in third place overall and first place for girls in the K-2 grade group. I am so proud of her! I'm proud of her for training hard and continuing to run once it was unbearably hot and humid. Mommy may have suggesting skipping a run on a particularly miserable day, but she was adamant that she had to practice.


It was when she was talking to her teacher afterwards that made me the most proud. Her teacher congratulated her on winning and Isabella said "thanks, all my hard work paid off!"

Yes it did kid!

Cue this mommy filling with pride! I was proud of her for winning. But I was beyond proud of her for realizing that she did great because she trained hard.

I want my kids to know that in our house we finish what we start. While I firmly believe that there are situations when it's in the best interest for the child to quit, for the most part kids need to fulfil their commitments. I love that she wanted to quit dance but stuck it out and enjoyed it. I also love that quitting wasn't an option for her with running club.

Even when mommy wanted to skip a run or two due to the heat.

2 comments:

  1. Way to go! I know it's hard when they start wanting to quit. I think it's important to find what they really enjoy though, so they won't want to quit. And it sounds like running might be your daughters "thing".

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  2. I don't know if she was nervous about dancing in front of an audience or what! I am glad you told her about it the way you did for quiting is not good. I am impressed the way you handled it.

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