The other day, as my three-year-old slept and my oldest was at school, I had some one-on-one time with my youngest son. He’s six months old, and it’s often hard to be able to focus on only him, especially when my toddler is present. As we were playing, I realized that whenever we, as adults, come in contact with a baby, we do our best to bring them joy.
We do our best to bring them joy as babies.
Whether it’s our own baby or a complete stranger’s baby that we see at the grocery store, we use a gentle tone of voice, we tell them how wonderful they are, or we act silly in hopes of a smile or a laugh. If the baby gets upset, we’re genuinely concerned, and we try our hardest to provide comfort or relief. I then thought, When does this end? Or better yet, why does this end? I then started to think about my oldest child. I have an eleven-year-old daughter that is on her way to middle school and full-on in tween mode.
When does this end? Why does this end?
She’s at that dramatic, preteen stage right now. If you have teens, you know exactly what I mean. Everything is the end of the world, in their minds they know it all, and a bad attitude is their go-to emotion. With that being said, if you have teens or interact with teens on a regular basis, you’re probably not coddling them and speaking baby talk all day to them.
But, what if that never went away (maybe not the baby talk, of course)? 😉 What if we never stopped trying to get them to crack a smile? What if we never stopped rubbing their back and trying to sooth them when we don’t know what else to do?
What if we never stopped?
In today’s world, we are seeing an abundance of rude, disrespectful kids. I know I see at least one social media post a day about a negative interaction with a kid. Teachers are falling off, our public-school systems are suffering, and a lot of that has to do with negative behaviors from kids and teens. I just can’t help but wonder, If the nurturing, care, and patience never stopped, would things be the same? Or would children feel more safe and cared for and not feel as angry?
This is a great perspective. It really gave me something to think about when I see older kids walking down the street, in the neighborhood, etc. What can I say or do to bring a little joy?