Everyone hopes there child will be able to withstand what is “out there” in the world. That first drop off at Kindergarten is often like opening up the cage at the lion’s den and waving, “See you later, I love you.” Wrapping your kid in bubble wrap just won’t cut it.
Creating resilient children builds up armor, shields, and strategies like army training and boot camp, empowering them to be safe and make good choices in situations when you are not there to “save” them. How do we create resilient children?
Every single parent has those moments lying awake at night wondering how or what because that lion’s den is knocking at our door, moving in strong and quick. Cute posts, including ones about family meals and goofy traditions may seem trivial yet give critical strategies that build up fortitude one day at a time. Be careful to not dismiss looking for something bigger or a quick fix because that is not the answer.
The exciting thing is that psychological, sociological, medical,…research support that creating resilient children is not about going BIG, (except for big passion) but zeroing in on the significant. Consistency is the key.
Today’s post puts another strategy in your hands and another link to the armor to save childhood and grow resilient children.
Creating a sense of family; that we are joined in a team has power. It is an invisible shield that surrounds our children, and our own lives. Dr. Lisa Miller, in her book, The Spiritual Child created my favorite statement, “the supersized “WE.” Your family does not need to be perfect. In fact understanding we are not perfect is part of the glue that helps us learn and know we have others who have experienced imperfect lives but have made it through. Together makes resiliency.
Begin sharing brief moments. Ask lots and lots of questions to those who are still living to preserve the stories.
TALK. Talking with your children is the key! Talk and talk and talk. Tell family stories in the car ride about yourself as a kid; especially the imperfect stories. Tell stories while waiting for the dentist about how you used to get toys out of a toy box after your tooth was pulled. Tell about your grandparents’ first car, your uncle’s funny firewalk story, the tree house you built. Tell why you hate tuna fish but love sushi. Tell family stories and link your child to a group of people that wrap around them and protect them because they are part of the supersized “WE.”
One mother I know, reads family stories at night as part of the bedtime ritual.
My daughter-in-law creates family videos of regular day occurrences besides extended family excursions, which her children watch over and over and love them. This can create so many chances to remember and talk. It’s a digital history to revisit over and over.
And when that phone picture pops up naughty, those hurtful words hit hard, the offer to take that pill or smell that vapor is offered, or your child feels alone or dumb, they have been trained, they have been prepped, they are better equipped to face the adversity…
Keep the stories going on and on your whole lives. Help them tell theirs to add to the whole. Because the power is in the connection.
Tell. Share. FORTIFY!
There’s only one childhood.
Arm them with family! It’s better than bubble wrap.