My almost-toddler is getting braver every day when it comes to attempting to make his standard mode of operating standing and walking rather than sitting and crawling. So, he now stands up on his own without the aid of a table and wants to walk.
Yesterday, he did this and took a fall. The impact wasn’t hard, but it was hard enough to cause tears. I walked up to him and said with excitement and pride, “You TRIED!” I repeated it many times. At around the 2nd or 3rd time, his crying turned to a smile. I didn’t have time to anticipate the reaction he would have to what I was saying before I said it. I said it because I was feeling it, not to elicit an intended response.
I couldn’t believe what happened! He understood that I was proud of him and he, in turn, felt proud of himself. He doesn’t know the word “tried”, so he comprehended this through the energy that I was giving. Wow.
I was also surprised at how the pride he felt from me and in himself mitigated the feeling of pain.
As I uttered the phrase over again, it struck me how much we could shift ourselves away from pain and suffering if we were to say “You TRIED!” with excitement and pride to ourselves each time we stumble.