Archive for April, 2012

PostHeaderIcon Facing Your Fears

After yesterday’s performance of The Adventures of Johnny Appleseed by my 3rd grader’s class, my daughter tells me that one of the actors forgot a couple of her lines due to stage fright. She also went on to comment that it was odd that she had stage fright because at last year’s performance, she didn’t. Hearing this, my almost 6 year old shared her point of view:

“It is all about facing your fears,” she said. “When you face your fears, your fears disappear as they get scared of you. But if you don’t face your fears, they become like poison in your mind and stay there and become dangerous.”

I was pleasantly surprised by the little girl’s unravelling of a very complex topic and it made me wonder where she got this understanding from. I wish I could take credit but I’m not sure if I’ve had such a deep conversation with her. I know her father hasn’t either. Could it be a teacher? Or ¬†perhaps her own conclusions from the hundreds of books she’s read or listened to since she was a toddler. Whatever the source was, I am impressed by a tender mind’s ability to decipher and present sensible instruction. I am glad that we talk, and that we talk a lot with our children. It isn’t enough to just know but necessary to also comprehend, but most importantly, to apply and convey that information.

PostHeaderIcon “Make your heart big”

The other day, my little one was upset because her sister received a birthday invitation and she didn’t. She was sobbing and I could feel how hurt she was especially because her sister would be going to see Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax movie for the birthday celebration.

It’s a tough job for a mother to explain how to react to a 5 year old especially when they are brimming with sensitive emotions. So I let her cry a bit, then I had her sit next to me and while holding her hand, I asked to her make her heart big. I’m not sure why I said that because I didn’t have a plan in place. It was one of those on the spur of the moment smart comments where my superior position as a mother allows me to say things that sound profound so that the child looks at me with awe and knows I mean business.

But as I went on, I realized that it came from years of listening to statements from elders that one must have a big heart to experience happiness. As expected, my daughter asked me how she could make her heart big. So this is what I said: “Put your hand over your heart, close your eyes and take a deep breath. Now think happy thoughts like when you wanted that Raggedy Ann doll and you went to the store with Papa and he bought it for you. Or think about when you got to take pictures with Snow White and Belle and Princess Tiana. Or think about how we had the clown come over for your birthday party. Now, make your lips a smiley shape. Let those happy thoughts get into a car and drive it from your mind to your lips then down to your heart. Hear it go zoom? Then open the garage door in your heart and let the car come on in. Now let the happy thoughts out. And because there are so many happy thoughts, your heart has to become big so the thoughts can have a party in there.”

By the end of my goofy tale of the journey of the car carrying the happy thoughts, my kid was smiling. Then she says, “mom, you’re so silly, but I’m happy now.”

So that is how you make your heart big.