Ok, so I am going to pat myself on the back a little here because I have a particular characteristic that really makes my life easier: I know when I'm wrong and I'm willing to give in.
I gave up television after I had Noelle. I just didn't have time for it anymore. And as I started reading all the literature about natural parenting I saw a common thread running through the tapestry of these families lives: little or no television. And so I decided my children would not watch it either.
That is, until my daughter has begun to develop a will and mind of her own.
And she loves television. Dora, Diego, Blues Clues, Pingu, Care Bears, WonderPets...
She loves them all. At first I was taken aback by it all. How did this happen? I have filled her life with so many wholesome things...why would she want TV? What did I do wrong? What is this going to do to her precious little spirit?
And then I remembered a promise I made to myself and my children...
I promised I would trust where my little girl's soul led her. I would have faith that Nature, Life, God made her whole and perfect and what brings her Joy must be Good. I promised I would trust this above all else.
And so I sat down one day to watch with her. I watched the pure joy and happiness that emanated from her as she watched Dora explore on all her adventures, Diego swing through the jungle rescuing animals, the WonderPets sing about Teamwork as they worked together to save the day. I felt the welling in my own heart as I sang along with these curious, adorable little creatures and remembered what it felt like when I was a child to have heroes I watched each day use their talents to bring peace and happiness to others.
I have witnessed the hours of imaginative play inspired by these characters. I have watched her name all her favorite dolls after Dora and Diego because they are her friends.
I have watched her learn things I could never have taught her because I didn't know. She said to me the other day
"Mom, mom I'm a porcupine and I shake my quills to scare off all the pumas!" And the fascinating thing is she actually knows what a puma is.
And then there was the moment when something she learned was showed to her in a different context(a different show:)) and the light that shone when she realized she had made the connection:
"Look! A circle of stars...it's the....Milky Way!!!...mmm, so creamy!"
After experiencing this journey with her -- asking questions, answering riddles, laughing, and singing, I realize how energizing TV can be, how many new experiences it brings to an adventurous spirit.
But mostly I have realized how meaningful it can be to See something our child loves with fresh eyes, unpainted by expectations,
Sit down next to them and say
"Show me, little one, show me what you have found."