Recently a mother shared this comment from her son: “Mom, I’m not a kid anymore. Kids have single-digit birthdays!”
Which left me wondering about whether we have forgotten what it is like to be small and to feel like we have no voice.
Have we forgotten what it’s like:
- to be pulled by the arm faster than our legs can go?
- to be left so far behind we get scared we can’t catch up?
- to be waiting for the reaction to what we’ve done…a reaction we know will come?
- to be sent to bed even though our favorite cousins can stay up later?
- to get socks when we wanted legos?
- to try over and over to get someone’s attention and not be noticed?
- to have something we want to say and not be heard?
One of the loneliest places in life is to have no voice. Being heard is part of belonging, of being included. We will never be able to meet every child’s wishes or demands, nor should we. But we can listen. We can hear each and every question, comment, idea, or concern they voice. We can hear and let them know we understand, that they were heard.
That is doable, and it would be remarkable.