Part of the Pack

A coyote and pine cones. Unlikely ingredients for friendship for a 7 year old.

With warmer Spring days, T and I play outside after daycare pickup before heading home.

There is a group of moms and kids that are there every day.

It’s amusing watching T try to initiate play. He likes to be chased but these kids are younger and stick to their activity of stockpiling pine cones.

T often struggles with personal space, social cues, and impulse control, so his strategy to get their attention is to take their pine cones and run.

This would annoy the kids. On one recent outing, one boy saw T arrive and whined, “Oh no, not that kid again.”

This upset T and he vented during bedtime about how rude the kids were.

T is quick to point out others’ faults but fails to see these same faults in his actions.

The hubby and I try not to be helicopter parents. He has to learn to figure things out with ongoing coaching from us.

So I asked T to reflect on how his own actions may cause the kids to act that way and what he can do differently next time.

This past Wednesday, there was much excitement when we arrived at the park.

One mom said there was a wolf in the field.

I squinted my eyes at the animal lying down. It looked like a fox. Then it stood up. Yup, a coyote.

The kids were all excited and I pointed out the animal to T, who went from 0 to 100 in a flash.

I told T that coyotes are dangerous and we need to keep a safe distance and not agitate it.

So Mr No Impulse Control started shouting at the coyote and throwing pine cones at its direction.

The kids gathered close to T, who told the kids the coyote was dangerous. They huddled close together and it felt like a bonding moment.

On Friday afternoon, as T was swinging by himself, the kids went up to him and offered him pine cones from their pile. One kid at a time.

T stockpiled them on the side and kept swinging.

After he jumped off the swing, he approached the kids, who let him into their group play.

The hubby and I let T stay and play for while.

At bedtime, T asked about the kids in a positive way. The hubby and I praised him for a great afternoon of play and we asked him if it felt good to have a positive interaction with them.

We then gave him a hug and turned off the lights.

22 thoughts on “Part of the Pack

  1. It’s a bit unsettling to see a coyote in broad daylight!! It’s kind of amazing how T handled the situation and that his heroic efforts made him part of the group! What a great moment.

    1. Thanks Linda. Seeing the coyote for sure was unsettling especially when I used to let wander freely around the field and surrounding bushy areas. Never again! 😆

      PS. First morning back in the office. It’s gonna take some time to get used to being up this early again! 😆

      1. Good luck with the adjustment back to office life!! I’ve been trying to come up with creative excuses to work from home more, but there’s only so many “appointments” and “deliveries” before it starts to look suspect!

  2. What a great story well told, Ab! It is so heart-warming to see our kids be able to work out their relationships. Relationships are hard and sometimes I’m amazed that my little ones have any given the things that sometimes come out of their mouths. What a beautiful way of banding together behind T’s courage! Love it!

    1. Thank you, Wynne! You said it best – navigating social environments can be a big learning curve for kids – and adults! – and it’s wonderful when kids can try and figure it out for themselves. The moment definitely made my day. 😊

    1. Thank you, LaDonna. These are the experiences that we live for as parents and that get us through the setbacks. 🙏💕 Hope you are taking good care too!

  3. Awwww this is such a sweet story! I’m glad both T and the other kids learned something from their past encounters and turned the not-so-positive experience into something heartwarming.

    1. Thank you, Bama. It was a really nice moment and still smiling about it. 😊 And I’m still thinking about your food post. 😆 It’s just past dinner in this part of the world.

  4. Wow, such a sweet story! I am so glad T learned from his previous experience and the kids were able to give him another chance.

    1. Thank you, Astrid. It was a very sweet moment. I hope the positive reinforcement he received will encourage and remind him how to respond in future situations. 🙏🤞🏻

  5. I am tearing up. This is like out of a movie! I love it. Great job guys! And T, great job! I guess it can be a positive that every day is a new day to us, grudges are not something our brains do…usually.

    1. Thank you, Rebecca. I think the ability to start each day as a blank slate is truly a gift indeed.

      It certainly felt like a movie moment. I’m under no illusion there’ll be many more bumpy moments ahead but like a good movie ending, you just enjoy it for what it is in that moment in time. 😊

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