| Freeze Frame |

The Kids Were Here

I try to view my children’s messes as remnants of their personalities


Point of focus: The Kids Were Here


What this means

I try to view my children’s messes as remnants of their personalities. When I make the effort to view the trail of their lives with affection, and to look for the story within the mess, those same messes are suddenly little love notes scattered around the house, left especially for me.


To Do

Find and photograph an item or scene that tells you without a doubt, “the kids were here.” Try to choose something that would normally irk you and instead ask yourself what story it tells about your child. Write a note verbalizing the story and allow yourself to find warm connection in the items dispersed around the house.

I don’t like things to be messy, so this requires an extra stretch for me, but even if you’re someone who doesn’t mind a mess, looking for the story it tells you about your children can be a powerful tool in building a connection with them, and it can give you more insight into who they are.

  • “I easily take your little toys for granted; your strollers and figurines scattered throughout the house are yet another thing for me to clean up after you've gone to school or fallen asleep in the evenings. And yet, whenever I take a moment to survey your activities and the trail left behind, I'm reminded of your creativity and natural happiness, and I'm overcome with appreciation that I'm witness to the story you're weaving as you grow.”


(Originally featured in Family First, Issue 758)

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