Mom, I don’t want to play cricket anymore. I want to join football now.
What do you mean you don’t like robotics now? Do you know how much these lego kits and classes cost?
Has your child ever quit an activity? An activity that he was extremely fond of and you went out of your way to find tutors for him and paid for the classes through your nose and chauffeured him back and forth every week like a diligent parent so that he can achieve his dreams.
But now after 6 to 12 months when he is getting better at it and there are competitions he can participate in, he chooses to back off?
And now the parent in you is worried. What if he turns out to be a quitter? What if he never sticks to one activity? After all, life is about perseverance and resilience and grit. And what about all the kits and expenses incurred.
How I totally understand what you mean. I have at least 3-4 different sports kits lying at home for my son who is all of nine years has at least changed his career half a dozen times.
But then isn’t that what childhood is?
The age to experiment and try? Nowadays adults also shift 3-4 careers in their lifetime. Shouldn’t children then try all possible options before choosing one, if they choose one at all that is?
Or then is it about our investment in their activities?
The teachers and the fee and the social position we have created for our child whether it is of a budding singer or a chef or a footballer, how do we now undo it? How do we go to the next party and say that the wave boarding in which she was so good is now in your attic gathering dust? Is that what bites you?
Or is it the social script handed down to us through media and books that somehow you always know what you are good at and then you keep working on it. And then achieve world-class mastery like A R Rahman or Messi? But then for each player or actor that reaches the top aren’t their millions who don’t? Are we not okay with accepting it and hence we keep pushing our child to an extent where it leads to anxiety and acrimony in the relationship?
Now I know it is difficult to see our children jump from one hobby to another. And they have been doing it since childhood. They will play with one toy as if that was the only one and then after a few months discard it heartlessly. but honestly what choice do we have when they switch? Force them to continue and make their life miserable? Keep taunting and pass sarcastic comments to show our unhappiness? Disengage completely with the child and pass on the message that it is better to be in a toxic environment rather than quit?
And let us not forget the hobbies that we took up with great fanfare and did not see through. I am sure each house has a dumbbell or exercise equipment that is gathering dust or that ice cream maker or over you bought because you wanted to learn baking. Each one of us has tried something only to find out it is not working out for us. Why then do our kids not have that choice?
So what has been your experience with picking up an activity and choosing another one in a few months? Have you done it? Has your child done it? Would love to know more about it Do share your experience with me and don’t forget to follow me on Musings of a Masterni on Instagram and Youtube.