Tuesday, July 29, 2014

{sols} similar, but different


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"Similar, but different."

We have always said that about our twin daughters all their life (all four years of it!).  In so many ways, they are similar, yet they are still very different.  That's what I love about them.  They each have their own unique qualities that make them who they are.  I want them to be their own person.  We encourage them to be their own person.

This year we started swim lessons.  P. was terrified of the water.  M. wanted to jump right in.  P. is more comfortable in the water now, and M. is more careful (she's worried about swallowing water).  P. has taken a liking to swimming and is progressing in her lessons.  This week her swim teacher wanted her to use a lighter yellow flotation device.  M. enjoys lessons, but is still building her swimming muscle memory and strength.  She was sad when she couldn't use the same new yellow flotation device as her sister.

I had to explain in four year old words why she was still using the blue flotation and why P. was using the yellow flotation.  I had to wipe away tears.  I had to encourage her to keep practicing and build those swimming muscles so that she could use the yellow flotation.  I had to remind her that they each have their strengths and they aren't the same at everything.  I had to remind her that the other little girls in the class were still using the blue flotation.  

I had to tell her that she couldn't use the same flotation as her sister, yet.  

That little word yet is so important in our house.  I want my daughters to have a growth mindset and the belief that they can do anything they put their mind to -- and not be fixed into thinking they can't do something.  With time and practice and belief, they can do anything!

So ...  Two days of tears.  Two days of lots and lots of encouragement.  Two days of convincing her to use the blue flotation.  Two days of pep talks to get her into the pool. 

We'll get through this and she will eventually be ready for the yellow flotation. 

However, my next fear?  That P. will advance to the next level of swim lessons, but M. will not!  (Yet.)

"Similar, but different."  And that's okay.   We all need the constant reminders.


9 comments:

  1. I love this Slice! It really captures how we all progress at our own rates. I'm sure M. has some talents that P. has not mastered yet and that's what makes each of us special. Thanks for sharing!

    Jennifer
    Sweet Writing Life
    Mrs. Laffin's Laughings

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  2. Yes, they each have their own strengths and excel differently. Encouragement and love is what they need to do the best that they can. I'm afraid that it will get more and more difficult when they enter school and develop at a different pace, but they will both succeed because of your encouragement and guidance and love. Hugs to all, Mom

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  3. This is so true in all families with more than one child, but with twins it must be doubly hard (pun intended). None of us is the same and realizing that is perhaps the most important of life lessons.

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  4. I agree so much about that word "yet". I grew up with twin cousins & they were identical, but oh so different. You must see this every day, & it's a challenge for those who've never known twins, who expect "same". Glad you are supporting that different is okay.

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  5. I love this! "Yet" is such an important word for everyone to embrace, but such a hard concept to grow accustomed to. I hope that all of my students learn to accept that everyone is different, with different strengths, and that it is just a matter of "yet."

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  6. A growth mindset is so important! Sometimes tasks seem impossible to conquer, but with that word "yet" all things are possible. Good luck in the lessons, they have come a long way.

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  7. Parenting is so hard! I wrote about that last week in my slice, but because I was the bad parent! It sounds like you're doing everything right, but it never makes it easier. I think we always want our kids to get everything right the first time without struggling. I know your little girl will be so proud when she gets there. I'm a 40 yr old swimmer and I still get told what I need to work on :)

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  8. I LOVE how you're fostering a growth mindset by using the word yet. That one little word is so important. (Almost worthy of being a OLW, isn't it?)

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  9. I love Peter Johnston's books and his discussions about fixed vs. dynamic mindsets (growth) and share it with my colleagues and students frequently. That word yet is so powerful! I enjoyed reading your slice and seeing this example in action, and yet, my heart hurt for your daughter, thinking of examples of my own daughters. I am glad that you captured this moment and that you are celebrating and encouraging each of your daughters.

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Thanks for sharing your thoughts.