This week brought about a bit of a mini milestone for Caitlin. It’s a funny one too, as it’s maybe not something that others will see as a milestone, but for us it really is.
I’ve written before about Caitlin’s struggle with her self confidence. As a parent, it’s hearth breaking. I’ve watched her stand awkwardly on the edge of a group of children, too nervous to speak. I’ve watched her as she watches children playing in the street, too scared to ask if she can join in. She would love to make new friends, but it’s a real struggle for her. It’s something we are working on, both at home and by joining Rainbows. It’s going to be a slow process, but hopefully we can help her build her confidence over time.
A little moment this week made me think that things are already improving.
My children don’t ‘play outside’ very often. We go out for walks a lot, and I take them to the park, but they don’t just play out in the street much. At this time of year especially, when I ask them if they want to play in the street for a bit I’m usually answered with groans. They’d much rather spend time colouring or playing on their iPads. This week, in a bid to get them out more often, I’ve been dressing them up warm and basically just pushing them out of the door. With strict instructions to stay in the street, I was happy enough to let them play while I watched them through the window. We live in a street with no road, so they are quite safe. They’ve done it a few nights this week, and thoroughly enjoyed themselves.
On Wednesday evening, I told them to go out for 20 minutes before dinner. On this occasion, some other children from the area appeared. I think having her brother by her side gave her a bit of a boost, and for the first time Caitlin had the confidence to join in with the other kids. These are the children she often watches play, and this time she was playing with them.
I stood at the window and watched with a big smile on my face as she ran around. She just looked so happy. They played for about an hour, continuing to play long after Neil had decided he was bored and come inside. She was disappointed when she had to come in for dinner, but couldn’t wait to tell us all about her new friends.
I’m hoping this encounter will help her to see that talking to new people isn’t as scary as she thought. But hey, even if this doesn’t teach her a lesson, I’m just happy that she’s made a couple of new friends to play with.
I hope your week has been a good one!
Linking up with Word of the Week