Yesterday, the ‘tween started out having a bad morning in only the way ‘tween angst manifests itself on the second day of summer break. Woe is me, I can’t see my friends, I hate cleaning my room, and it’s so boring. The good thing is, this one will say “I need attention.” That usually means I can squeeze out a hug. Or get a quick cuddle. On a good day, it also means I can get a good conversation.
I had been meaning, in the the back of my mind, to offer my kids a Yes Day. If you aren’t familiar, it’s the title of late author Amy Krouse Rosenthal’s picture book and now a movie starring Jennifer Garner. I haven’t read the book and I’ve only watched the movie trailer, but the premise is to say yes to your kid(s) for one day rather than no.
In the way I do celebrations and how I imagine events to happen (they never match up to my intended expectations and usually flop before I start), I didn’t think through it much. After a little pep talk, I suggested a Yes Day. It was still early, I had the day off, and we didn’t have anything planned other than puttering around the house. My invitation was accepted.
I explained whatever is requested today, within reason–I mean, ask for a million dollars and there’s no way I can make that happen–I’ll say yes. I decided to go with it, took a deep breath and ideas started rolling. There’s a little doughnut place within a popular shopping destination. We rarely go shopping. I said yes and off we went. We shared doughnuts for lunch. Popping in and out of shops, we wound up at a candy store and I bought a bag of overpriced candy, but who can deny a kid scoops of candy? Me, I’m a meanie mom, but she wasn’t invited today. Our final stop yielded a small box of amazonite, quartz, and rose quartz crystals.
We spent the rest of the afternoon watching a favorite series, cuddled on my bed with the laptop resting between us. Apparently, watching on my laptop is more fun than using the TV. Who knew?
That was it. I thought it would be a busier day. We returned home much sooner than I expected. I said yes to smaller things, moments. I honestly thought I’d have to brace myself for a long list of requests. I took a step back and watched the day unfold. I should say yes more often.
3 thoughts on “Yes, Kid!”
I love the way the day unfolded. Simple and so fun. Memory making!
Oh, the memory this prompted for me. My kiddo was having a really rough time around third grade (apparently it’s a thing that Montessori-trained educators know about, but the rest of us aren’t as aware of). It was getting serious enough to prompt therapy. After a few sessions, the therapist pulled me aside and said my child would get more out of sessions with me than with her, and trained me to do play therapy. Two sessions a week, a half-hour apiece. sitting on our living room floor with prescribed toys placed on the edge of a blanket spread beneath us. I was not allowed to give directions. I had to minimize any questioning, and focus on narrating what my child was doing and follow their direction. It was a profound experience that carried over into my special education teaching….I’m glad you experienced such closeness with your kids, and hope there are more Yes Days to come!
I think, for me at least, getting lost in the details of making sure the kids have something to do and somewhere to go gets us all overwhelmed. We live in a competitive culture where we have to make sure our kids are always busy, learning new skills, catching up on others, playdates, family trips, vacations, all of the cool events, etc…whew! Letting them take the lead once in a while is good for all of us. There are more yes days in our future.
I’m glad your therapist noticed what would benefit both your and your child. Kudos to them for training you to do play therapy.
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