Our son Caidin, who is eight, loves all things Pokémon. He has the cards, he has the DS Game, he watches it on television and when his best friend Sam comes over they make up Pokémon games to play on the trampoline.
At first I was resistant to the whole Pokémon thing. But soon I realized that the cards are a fascinating in road to math and the game requires quite a deal of strategy and forethought to beat your opponents. So as long as things stay in moderation, I’m good with the Pokémon phase.
The other day, Caidin wanted to look up on line what Pokémon ‘Red’ has. I don’t really know who or what ‘Red’ is, but I told Caidin I’d sit with him while he looked up his question.
We got the laptop, sat down, and Caidin started typing. W. H. A.T.P.O …I thought it was going to take all day. He got as far as ‘What Pokémon,’ when the Google search bar displayed ‘What Pokémon Are You?’ He’d found a quiz, an event almost as exciting as the game itself. So we popped over to the page and he started taking the quiz. There were 10 questions and each question had 10 answers from which he could pick.
The first question was ‘A bully is about to beat up an innocent stranger on the street, what do you do?’ The possible answers ranged from running to get help, helping the person after the fight, walking away, laughing, pretending like you didn’t see anything and stepping in and taking the persons place. Caidin chose, ‘stepping in and taking the persons place.’
Another question was ‘A man just stole a chocolate bar from you, what do you do?’ The possible answers ranged from reasoning, to asking for it back nicely, to brute force, to telling. Caidin chose ‘I’ll try and reason with him.’
Caidin’s response to the next question was most telling. The question was ‘You are about to perform in front of a crowd, how do you feel?’ I was really curious to see what he would answer to this. He performs quite a bit. He plays the guitar and his school does a lot of dance and drama presentations. I scanned the answers and I thought for sure it would be ‘Hopefully they will like me.’ Other possibilities ranged from apprehension, fear, anxiety, crying, neutrality and even anger. Caidin chose ‘I have endless confidence in myself.’ (Yay! self-validation!)
The other seven questions were equally insightful, showing me that Caidin is a caring friend, a loyal friend, not afraid to speak his mind and incredibly self-aware.
All things I probably knew in one way or another just from watching him interact with others and by helping him with the challenges he encounters, but what was really rewarding in this moment was the opportunity to simply sit back and watch him define himself.
I stayed quiet through the whole thing. I think I actually started holding my breath as I realized what was happening. I didn’t want to influence his choices in any way. I didn’t react to a single choice he made, but I was certainly taking mental notes.
We never know where we will gain insight into who our children are, how they see the world and how they think about themselves and others. In all honesty, I never expected the question ‘What Pokémon Are You?’ to provide such a wonderful wealth of insight and information about my son, yet it did and I am the better for it.
Moments like these are not only priceless they are almost magical. Had I not taken the time to sit with him, I would have missed this amazing opportunity to learn more about Caidin through his own eyes.
I also never thought I would be saying this but, ‘Thanks Pokémon!’
© 2012 Christine Agro
Christine Agro is a clairvoyant, naturopath, Master Herbalist, conscious mom and author of 50 Ways to Live Life Consciously as well as of The Conscious Living Wisdom Cards (Special Moms’ Edition). Christine is founder of The Conscious Mom’s Guide, a membership site where she helps support you on your own journey of living life consciously and on your journey of being a Conscious parent. You can also join Christine on Facebook. To contact Christine or to schedule an appointment with her please email her.