The Bliss Blog

The Bliss Blog


Smart and Curious

On my way home from work recently, I stopped at a local supermarket to pick up a few items. I am a consummate people watcher who enjoys observing interactions between folks. I noticed a mother and her adorable 4 or 5 year old daughter. Dressed in rainbow striped tights, a polka-dot skirt and jacket and pink scarf around her neck, shoulder length light brown hair framed her cute little face. Sometimes she walked ahead of her mother, sometimes next to her. She chattered away, touching things on the shelves as she walked by. Much to my dismay, I could hear her mother  telling her “Don’t touch, stop asking so many questions, get over here.”  in what in my opinion was an unecessarily harsh tone. I followed them for a bit, considering my options. While I know that she might have needed re-direction so as not to knock anything over,  mom’s reaction seemed over the top.  I didn’t want to undermine her mother AND I didn’t want to miss an opportunity to somehow let this child know that her natural curiosity didn’t need to be squelched.  Before I went to the check out counter, I approached them and commented to this woman that her daughter was so smart and curious. She cringed a bit and then replied that she asked too many questions. “No such thing.”, I countered.  “That’s how she learns.” and then I smiled at both of them.

It occurred to me that as the daughter of parents who encouraged questions, my curiousity and willingness to learn new things, was enhanced. As a result, I loved to read, devouring knowlege like chocolate. Back then, the prevailing thought, which my parents fiercely countered, was that ‘children should be seen and not heard.’ Although Jan and I knew that there were certain places we were expected to be quiet, like synagogue, or at the movies, we were also expected to be kids and play joyously.  We would sing silly songs, laugh outrageously, dig in the dirt, jump rope, sled, skate, fly kites, bike, swim, build sand castles at the beach, sit on the floor in the kitchen and play jacks and marbles.  Our parents would engage in those activities with us at times….big kids they themselves were.

This morning as I was driving to work, I saw a delightful sight of a grandfather walking down the street, holding hands with his toddler grandchild. He was reaching down to this little one’s level and walking at his pace; a companion along the path. THAT is the image I would prefer to maintain. Children are such sponges that soak up whatever they experience and want to trust the adults around them. What would you prefer to offer in exchange for such trust? What a world it would be if all children were encouraged to be smart and curious.

http://youtu.be/EkaKwXddT_I Teach Your Children by Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young



Previous Posts

Is Sleep Highly Over-rated?
    I had long believed and expressed that sleep was highly over-rated whenever someone would ask how I managed to maintain what I called a 'crazy-busy' schedule that included a full time job, several over-lapping consulting jobs, raising a child as a single parent after being widowe

posted 9:08:03am Jan. 28, 2015 | read full post »

The Gift of Vulnerability
A quote from one of my favorite books has set the stage for an ongoing process in my life. The Velveteen Rabbit is a tale of a little boy whose toys dispense wisdom to each other,  the child and the reader of this classic. The rabbit, who is a bit insecure and wondering if the tot will favor him, a

posted 10:17:06am Jan. 26, 2015 | read full post »

On the Elevator
  Yesterday I received a surprise in the mail. It was a tiny pocket sized book called Back To Joy that was compiled by author June Cotner. It contains tidbits of wisdom from the likes of Anne Lamott, John Welwood, Winston Churchill, Helen Keller, Rachel Carson, Og Mandino and someone else wh

posted 9:26:51pm Jan. 24, 2015 | read full post »

Wabi Sabi Walls
    The Japanese concept of Wabi Sabi is defined in Wikipedia as: " A comprehensive  Japanese world view or aesthetic centered on the acceptance of transience and imperfection. The aesthetic is sometimes described as one of beauty that is "imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete".

posted 9:31:09pm Jan. 23, 2015 | read full post »

Clothes Make The Man
As I was speaking with a client today, we were discussing ways that people learn who they are and how they re-create themselves when major life changes occur. I remembered a scene from one of my favorite films:  Joe vs. the Volcano. Tom Hanks plays Joe Banks who  has a dreary, gray life, with pre

posted 10:22:22pm Jan. 21, 2015 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.