By Shana Rank
A couple of weeks ago I was sitting outside with my son, Gideon. Often times while he and I sit outside I watch him explore and play—giving him space to learn on his own. At 14 months old, Gideon is fascinated with balls; one of his favorites is a bright yellow bouncy ball—about the size of a basketball.
One afternoon he was trying to push his yellow ball up a slight incline of grass to the patio. Since he is not yet a pro at walking, he was on his hands and knees pushing with the one hand and using the other to move forward. Three times he tried to get that bouncy ball to stay on the patio, and three times it bounced off of something and rolled back down the hill. After letting out a grunt of discouragement he looked up at me, hoping for some help. I told him he could do it, and to try again.
That day he gave up on the bouncy ball. A week or so later, he succeeded with no problem—pushing the ball with ease and control up onto the patio. Even little toddlers try hard and get discouraged, but he didn’t give up.
At first glance, Gideon’s progress might be missed or forgotten, but his small steps are a beautiful process of growing! Each of us can recall an experience that taught us courage and left us with the gift of wisdom. Gideon’s efforts reminded me that I must never underestimate the achievements of daily life—even when trying to control a bright yellow bouncy ball!