"I don't like my body!" My then-2-year-old screamed. I'm pretty fearless with her, mind you, and it takes a lot for anything she says or does to faze me. But this one stopped my mind for a moment, and in that moment, I raced into the past and ahead to the future.
If you're anything like me, you've woefully underprepared, again and again, when your child has gotten sick in their carseat. After a holiday cookie-tossing bonanza, we decided to adult a little harder around here and create a go-bag with all of our carseat cleaning needs handy. We pass on the wisdom conferred by our inexperience to you.
As we say in Yiddish, "People make plans and God laughs." I'd like to append that idiom to read, "People caring for small children make plans and God grabs a jumbo tub of popcorn."
Small children suck at dining in restaurants. But if the restaurant deities are whispering to you and you simply must heed their call, here's some advice to help you navigate the experience with your spirit and dignity (mostly) intact.
Small children live in the present moment, in the now. They are in deep, laser focused, inextricably tangled up in their object of engagement. Don't let that little one bogart all the wonder - take a toke next time it passes around. Join that magical mystery tour and strive to see the world purely, as through a child's, once more.
Humans have largely lost their villages, replacing them with screens and the stories they tell. To update the old saying, it takes a village to raise both children and parents alike. Who - or what - is in your village?
The season of giving is upon us, for certain, but the spirit of generosity is alive and well year-round. As parents and caregivers, we can help our children as they experience all kinds of feelings, among them the joy that comes from authentic generosity. When we strengthen their hearts and souls, we strengthen our own in turn.