She was writhing naked around on the bed. She was excited with a huge smile on her face. My heart rate was rising.
We had to be somewhere in 20 minutes. We were running out of time. She didn’t care.
I was frustrated. She wouldn’t cooperate. Why would she? I was cramming her into a modern construct that is meaningless from a biological evolutionary perspective.
3 year olds show us how we’ve gone astray in our attempts to scale and find meaning.
Jen, my wife, and I were trying to get Evie and Ellie, our twin girls, dressed and ready for our annual family photos.
The girls don’t care about annual family photos. Why would they? Biologically, they are designed to run around playing with their siblings and cousins with mom, aunts and grandparents around. The notion of being on a schedule, working for someone for money, having to get dressed for pictures (or anything else) are not part of their DNA.
One of the reasons so many of us have difficulty being healthy (physically, emotionally and spiritually) is that we live in a world that represents the path of economic evolution, not biological evolution. It’s 2014 and our bodies and brain are designed for the year 3000 BC (at best).
This is tough to remember when trying to put a diaper on two 3 year olds while they run, roll and rumble around giggling and laughing.
The moments where frustration escalates with the kids is almost always tied to time. It’s time for bed. It’s time to eat so that they can have bath time, get to school on time or you have to get to work.
I’m not suggesting we move back into caves. I am suggesting we take a breath.
When you want to kill your kids for not working to your schedule, when you want to shoot the guy who cut you off in traffic and left you stuck at another red light, when you want to beat the hell out of the customer service agent who’s moving too slowly, when the guy who’s supposed get something done on your project is late (again) …
Realize we’re all fish out of water with unmet needs. We have schedules of invented importance and a brain that’s built for a world where we spend most of our time with our families and friends seeking to ensure our provision for the day as we look for food and shelter.
The top reason a three year old is terrible? You (and me) and our .
Three year olds aren’t terrible. Our over scheduled, self important, rule driven lives are.