I have always been a Star Wars fan. I grew up with a brother who was engrossed in the action figures and the model ships and we often spent hours with friends in his room defending the Jedi’s from the Dark Side of The Force. Needless to say, I was tickled when my boy showed an interest in the stories, action figures, and Lego sets. He has always had an incredible imagination and recently he used a practical application of “The Force” that reminded me about the importance of acceptance.
It was an evening of errands, which is always my son’s least favorite activity, and our last stop happened to be a big box store with automatic sliding doors. I finished paying and ushered my boy ahead of me to wait for our friend and my daughter. I turned away from my son for a moment to check on where the other two were in line and when I looked back I saw him in a bracing stance in the middle of the automatic door holding his hands up. He looked as if he was holding up an imaginary wall. He is five and does silly stuff so I didn’t comment and simply said, “Let’s go, we’ll wait for them outside” to which he replied, “I can’t mom, I’m using the force to keep the door open and I am barely holding on!” Needless to say I chuckled and a few customers received some entertainment, as well as the benefit of his Jedi power, as he remained in his stance until the rest of our party made their way through.
I smiled at his creativity and appreciated his ability to find some fun in a task he hates. As busy parents I believe we often steal these moments from our kids in the interest of hurrying things along. I am definitely guilty of this on more than one occasion. But I do revel in and appreciate the moments when I resist this urge and let him be. There is no need to point out that it is an automatic door and that he is not a Jedi Knight, but rather a little boy in the way of busy people trying to get home. He already knows this to be true. Or is it?
As we walked through the second set of doors and a crowd followed us he said to me, “I know they are just automatic doors Mom.” But before I could say a word to compliment his imagination, the doors started to close in front of the group of people behind us. Catching the motion out of the corner of his eye he pulled away from me, leaped back into his stance, held up his hands with all his might, and the doors parted. His timing was perfect and a group of busy shoppers were saved from an abrupt closing!
I burst out laughing, as did the other people around us. Collecting him from the doorway I said, “What a great way to use the force buddy.” The other shoppers smiled and nodded in agreement. He took my hand with a proud look on his face. We made our way to the car laughing at his perfect timing and as we walked hand in hand he looked up at me and quietly said, “Mom, maybe I am a Jedi after all.” There was only one reply I could give him. “Maybe you are son, maybe you are.”
The following commercial from Volkswagen is a favorite of mine and gives you a taste of letting a child be one with his “force”.
The Force: Volkswagen Commercial
Can you recall a time when you just let a child just “be” when you had the urge to hurry them along? How did it feel to let go? Share your experience below.