My Kids Are Amazing (I Want Them to Think So Too)
My kids love to be winners, and they want to be the best and fastest at everything.
When I explained the Summer Olympics to them and described how athletes compete to become the best in the world, my six-year-old child’s brain practically exploded.
They race to see who will be the next dinner winner, or the breakfast winner, or who can put the most pieces of chicken in their mouths at the same time.
Who will be the fastest to race down the hall, or to race to the door, and if the person who called it didn’t win? “Well, that was not a race.”
It’s all good-natured, and I know it’s a phase, but I also recognize that desire to be favored as an individual.
I remember being seven or eight years old, and one night as my mom was tucking me into bed, I asked her whom in our family did she love the most?
“I love all of you,” she said.
“Do you love me more than my brother? Do you love me more than Daddy?”
My mom was very diplomatic and generous, and she wouldn’t commit to loving one person more than another. I wanted to be loved the MOST, to be that important and special to somebody.
One time I was talking to a friend about how “My daughter is so beautiful, and I feel like we tell her that all the time, but sometimes I wonder if we tell her that too much.”
I guess I was worried about vanity or placing too much importance on her looks, but my friend wisely said, “As she grows up, there will be so many things that try to tell her otherwise. Don’t worry about telling her too often that she’s beautiful.”
Every day I tell my kids that I think they are beautiful and kind and smart, and I’ve never met kids more amazing to me than them. I bet they will get tired of hearing about it.
At night we go through the list of how much I love them: how I will love them when they are stinky, and I even love them when they act badly, and that I will always love them no matter what. I hope that if they hear how amazing they are, they’ll feel and believe it too.