‘No no, my kid’s not naughty. They’re just full of spirit. Crazy, unabashed, uncontrollable spirit’.
Got a little one who always seems to keep you on your toes, who is always eager to try something new, who has more energy than a rabbit on Red Bull?
Congratulations. You’ve got a wild child under your roof.
Eager, effervescent, enthusiastic, energetic – spirited kids are the best. No, I’m not just saying that because I’ve got two of them (they are the muddy ones down below) and I need an excuse as to why they run laps around me most days. I’m saying it because it’s true.
Think your little one might fall into the category of a ‘spirited’ child? Here are 10 things mums of high-spirited kids will understand all too well.
1. You go to bed absolutely exhausted most nights
Meanwhile, your little one is still bouncing off the walls at the end of the day. How is it even possible that they are still going? Seriously, where is this extra energy coming from? And give some of it to me, dammit.
2. You lose a lot of arguments
Sure, sometimes you can convince your spirited child to accept your offer, but, most of the time, your child’s s
tubborn pigheadedness persistence outlasts yours. So how can you convince your strong-willed child to stop what they are doing and listen to you? You probably can’t. But you can bribe them, which may work some of the time.
3. You do A LOT of laundry
Because, most days, your spirited child comes in muddy, wet or covered in an unknown sticky substance.
4. You have a pretty decent first aid kit
You have to to keep up with the many bruises, cuts and scrapes that your spirited adventurer walks through the door with. But a few bandaids (and trips to the ER) are all part of the fun.
5. You feel the need to apologise to the neighbours on a regular basis
It’s not like your spirited child means to use their ‘outside voice’ everywhere. It’s just this is the only voice they know. Loud, proud and probably audible from eight blocks away. Whether racing cars in the bedroom or playing pass the parcel at a birthday party, you probably have to give a reminder to “lower your voice” a few times.
6. You are an expert at handling every emotion under the sun
Most likely because your spirited child experiences them all in one day. And they can go from deliriously happy to full blown Hulk in the blink of an eye. That’s the thing about high-spirited kiddies – their passion is often harder to contain. And control.
7. You get called into meetings at school
So much enthusiasm is hard to contain, especially in a school setting. Sometimes this eagerness is considered disruptive, defiant even. You’ve probably heard the words ‘trouble focusing’ thrown around a few times.
8. You have heaps of birthday party and play date requests
Why? Because spirited kids tend to be popular. They are funny, charming, outgoing and fearless. Who wouldn’t want to be friends with them? This bubbly personality is a great quality to have, whether your little one is making others laugh on the playground or schmoozing the head honchos later in life.
9. You often feel a loss of control
And probably frustrated. You may also feel like you’re doing the wrong thing. This comes with the territory when you have a wild child on your hands. Every day is go, go, go. There is no stop. You really never know what the day will bring, which can be terrifying, but also fun.
10. You laugh… a lot
In between the moments of frustration and full on fear, you probably have countless moments of pure joy. And pride. And amazement that yes, this outgoing little bundle of awesomeness is your child.
Watching free-spirited children be themselves is one of the most incredible things you will ever witness. Going on their crazy adventures, listening to their wild theories and experiencing their enthusiastic view of life first hand will change your perspective on pretty much everything.
Sure, raising a free spirit will leave you exhausted, overwhelmed and not in control. But, mostly, it will make you realise just how lucky you share your world with someone who is so full of life. It is one of the greatest gifts a parent could ever ask for.
Check out these reasons my pre-schooler cracked the sh*ts this week for more proof that free-spirited kids are full of laughter. And tears.