While taking care of my friend’s baby one afternoon, it was bath-time for little Caleb, who had just recently started crawling.
Sitting at one end of the tub, with several toys within arm’s length, I watched as he eyed the out-of-reach toy at the opposite end of the tub: Ernie in a sailboat. To Caleb, this was clearly enticing. Rather than hand it to him, I decided to wait and see what he’d do on his own.
After some thought, he maneuvered his little body in such as way as to position himself directly in line with the still-out-of-reach object of his desire. He did this while never taking his eyes off of Ernie.
An extended pause followed. He was contemplating and calculating his next move. Then, slowly… and with great focus… he made his way… one small, inching-forward movement at a time … until he reached the other end of the tub where Ernie resided. Caleb then reached for Ernie. Yet, his first several attempts at grabbing hold of Ernie in his little boat were unsuccessful. Ernie was sailing, and remained just out of reach of Caleb. But Caleb did not give up.
There were other easier to reach options he could have played with instead, but clearly those options were not going to satisfy him. He was a boy on a mission. He knew what he wanted and he was determined to get it. Caleb never lost faith, and he didn’t looked up for me to help once.
After several more attempts, he finally took charge of the situation and was able to grab Ernie by the head. Head in hand, he sat up, placed the boat on his lap, looked up at me, and started clapping. He was proud! And rightly so! Caleb and I celebrated together, each clapping with our ear-to-ear grins.
Questions to consider:
- What’s your “Ernie in a sailboat”? What do you want that’s currently out of reach?
- Are you willing to s-t-r-e-t-c-h & reach & keep at it until you have a firm grip?
- How would it feel to have found a way? As proud as Caleb felt?
- Who will you celebrate with?
Go for it, baby!