I had 2 conversations and an object lesson along a similar topic yesterday that got me thinking. My instinct as a mom is to protect and shelter my children. I consider things like homeschooling for all the wrong reasons. I don't feel called to it but I do want to protect my kids from those "other children" who might do them harm.
I was talking to a friend yesterday about how I have to allow my kids to experience life outside my protection and be exposed to electronics, the internet, "those other kids", and all the things that I wish weren't a part of their life but must be if they are going to function some day as successful adults. A few hours later I was working with Jack on a pumpkin project that he was dreading. The boy hates homework and even if it is decorating a pumpkin, he is going to fight it. What should have been an enjoyable time together turned into me (God forbid) making him decorate a pumpkin while I lectured him about his attitude.
An hour or so later I was venting to a friend and mentor about my frustrations from the pumpkin project and she said something that made me think. She suggested that maybe I should have just let him do it and if he didn't that I should let him fail. Can I just go ahead and confess that my first thought was, "but then what would his teacher think of ME?" Yes I am that bad.
But she has a great point. In the same way that my instinct is to protect my child from all of the outside influences that might hurt him, do I also protect him from some very important lessons like failure? She made another good point that it is better for him to fail now then to learn that lesson in high school when it goes on a transcript.
So as I think of this more, I actually think I am going to look now for opportunities to let my kids fail. I know that is SO NOT MY NORMAL THOUGHT PATTERN, but I think it is good. You see I am not just going to let them fail, but I am also going to be armed and ready to use that time to teach them about things like humility and how to recover well so when they fail again and I am not around, they will (Lord willing) have what it takes to survive and be stronger on the other side. Okay friends are you with me? Let's go help our kids fail and fail well! :)