I have a Christmas request for you. But first I wanted to touch base about our kids mental health as we move through the holidays. I want to be honest with you about how our kids are doing right now because it’s not good.
One night last week, I came home from work, tired after all the masking. Zooming. Training. All the things. And as I entered the front door I saw my 16-year old in a puddle of tears.
“I feel so invaded mom.” I paused. We sat. I asked her what she meant by “invaded.”
“It’s just that everything is here. My school is here. I live here. I talk to friends here. You’re here. My brother’s always here. I eat here. I work out here. We can’t do anything with friends, and I know that’s the right thing, but I hate being told what to do. That’s invasive too! I feel invaded – it’s all here. Only here.” I understood.
Me: “I’m sorry.”
Her: “I’m sad.”
Me: “Me too.”
And we sat. We listed all the things we’re sad about right now. I didn’t fix it. I didn’t minimize it. I didn’t tell her other people have it worse than her. I didn’t tell her how this will end and things will feel better. I just sat with her.
Later, I asked how I could help and we made a short plan about self-care. After all the tears were out.
Here’s my Christmas request: Can you check in on your kids, even if you feel like they’re ok?
The holidays can be so joyful for some, but sorrowful for others. And right now, kids feel pretty lonely and disconnected. There’s no wrong way to start that conversation.
Overall, as I’ve talked about the forgiveness and patience we need as adults, I’m asking you to extend that to children right now too. They are doing the best they can right now. You are doing the best you can right now.
Tell them you love them.
Reassure them you’re a fan.
Let them know you’re willing to listen without fixing it.
Then sit there. In the love. In the pain. In whatever comes up.
I hope you have a beautiful holiday. Next week, I’m preparing a short video of thanks – stay tuned!
With gratitude and peace,