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You Only Have To Start

January 28, 2014

You Only Have To Startpencil-pusher-1235996-small
by Stacey Biemiller Maisch

Staring at an empty page
tears rolling down his chin.
He sighs, frustrated,
thinking that I don’t understand him.

I want to tell him that I know
exactly how he feels.
I want to hug him, comfort him
assist with this ordeal.

Instead I stand one room away
just peeking in to see
if he has started working yet,
but I can’t let him see me.

He needs to puzzle through this,
Needs to get there on his own.
He needs to learn how to begin,
so he can get it done.

He’s only eight, in second grade,
hating both homework and me.
It’s not that I don’t want to help;
I just need to let him be.

I need to let him flail and fret;
I need to let him be upset.
I need to watch him struggle.
If it’s too easy, he’ll forget.

Once this is finally finished,
I know he’ll stomp and fuss.
He’ll claim how much he just hates school,
and even, possibly, us.

But when it’s over, he will know
that he completed this task.
And any future hurdles
won’t be too much to ask.

By butting out, a room away,
I just hope he learns
The best rewards cannot be given;
No, they must be earned.

I hope someday that he will know,
deep down in his heart,
that all things become possible.
You only have to start.

I wrote this poem after reading the following phenomenal article from Forbes, 7 Crippling Parenting Behaviors That Keep Children From Growing Into Leaders. I am guilty of more than half of these things, so I still have a long way to go.

Holding Hands

4 Comments leave one →
  1. January 28, 2014 7:43 PM

    Loved this Stacey! You’ve described my 7 year-old daughter. Tonight she “forgot” her folder at school and now she hates her daddy for playing teacher and assigning her different homework. Wish me luck! 🙂

    • January 28, 2014 8:23 PM

      Oh boy, good luck, Shane!! And kudos to you for assigning original homework!! I have done the same thing, believe it or not! It’ll give them stories for their therapists in years to come. 😉

  2. Laura Fiore permalink
    January 28, 2014 10:20 PM

    We went through this tonight as well;c omplete with temper tantrums and whining. He finally did it, but it certainly did have the effort I would have liked.

    • January 28, 2014 10:33 PM

      Effort is nice, but at least it’s complete, right, Laura? Some nights make me hate homework more as a parent than I hated it as a kid. (and others make me want to run as far away from my children as possible, the whiny babies!) 😉

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