I would like to start this by saying simply that I ADORE my little cyclone-man, and seeing him hurt makes me physically ill:
For Christmas my husband bought our son his first pocket knife, and they have been practicing with it ever since.
Last night they were whittling some crayons in the kitchen when I over heard this conversation.
“Ok, so you cut your thumb, but you’re ok… no, just breath–you’re ok, take some deep breaths. I’ll get you a towel but you have to stay calm. Just stay calm, go ahead and look at your cut, you earned it, don’t be afraid of it…”
Not gonna lie, it took more then a little self-control to not jump up and run to hug my little man,
But I was so impressed with what my husband was saying and doing to help our son through his first knife accident that I managed to pause and listen.
Having a man in my son’s life, (namely his father) is so much more important then I ever realized before.
The way my husband approaches things is quite different then the way I do–and I believe very deeply that BOTH approaches are important for my children’s upbringing.
Last night my husband said things like, “Look at the blood” which I would never think to do.
Basically he was saying, “Get used to it. Learn to not freak-out at the sight of it. Because you will surely see more of it–if not your own, then someone else’s–and if that’d be the case, then they will need you to stay calm as well.”
It’s so smart–but the truth is, Adam isn’t planning these out, it’s just his natural way of parenting.
Because it is who he is.
He is the kind of man who chops his own firewood, fixes his own truck, changes his own tires.
He runs a chainsaw, climbs mountains, plays rough.
He’s gotten used to blood, and understands that sometimes having fun means getting hurt, and he wants our kids to be prepared for that.
This means, making sure they grow up knowing how to use different tools, (like a pocket knife) and respecting their power.
I don’t know that I would have thought about it. . .
After all the blood and tears had subsided the boys came into the living room with me to take a break and get a bandaid.
Adam was so proud I think he could’ve cried…(if he wasn’t too much of a man, of course)
It was a truly beautiful moment. Watching my man, not only talk rationally to our son about what happened and why, but also see him comfort our boy and encourage him.
Together they counted all the scars on Adam’s arms and hands, with our son curled up in his lap.
The very same arms that had swung those axes and brandished those chainsaws, were now tenderly hugging our boy– it’s a beautiful thing.
This morning our boy was so excited to show us his cut, that he insisted was “All better”
and he jumped right in to explaining which crayons they had already sharpened, and which ones they still had to do.
Did you catch that?
He still wants to whittle, cutting his thumb hasn’t stopped him.
What a guy.
At lunch I asked him how his thumb felt and he said GREAT.
The only problem is he had to eat his pickle with his left hand:
Vinegar and knife cuts don’t mix.
(My husbands side of the story:)
My sons first pocket knife cut. I’m such a proud happy father. My son was sharpening a wooden crayon that I bought him for Christmas. I was giving him a little bit more responsibility with the knife than I had before and he did what I did as a kid, he pushed the limit. He cut his finger and the blood started to come out. I told him to take a deep breath and just suck the blood off his finger (so none would drop on his moms clean floor). He didn’t like that idea and watched it bleed for a bit before he figured a towel was a better option than his mouth and his mothers clean floor…so he got a paper towel. I had him put pressure on it and told that it was just a small one and there were many more to come as I showed him the scars on my hands that were a result of knife and tomahawk mistakes of my wonderful youth. He wanted a band aid as if those fix all problems but I made him wait and spoke to him about the rules of the blade that I have been teaching him about and how he broke those rules. I wanted him to think hard about the consequences while he was still feeling the pain. ( he needs to get used to blood and learn how to handle it calmly and respectively, he is a boy and will be man someday. I remember my first cut with my red Swiss Army knife, thought my thumb got cut off, I remember feeling stupid at first and then proud I handled it like a man(while crying my eyes out) and bled all over and recovered to “whittle” again and cut my finger again. It makes me so happy to experience this with my boy. I can’t wait to see how he handles it the next time.