The other day Ainsley was really clingy when I arrived at her Daisy meeting (I’m one of the leaders). She wanted to sit on my lap during the meeting. I have to admit I was kindof annoyed. The whole point of Girl Scouts is to raise up girl leaders. After a few minutes she whispered in my ear, “I have to tell you something.”
We scooted off to a corner where she confessed the following: “I almost got my name on the board today. I was trying to tell Mrs. Adams something and ……. ” I realized why she was acting so strange.
Words are a powerful thing. Gary Chapman talks about words of affirmation being one of the primary ways people feel loved in his book The Five Love Languages. I decided to try something dealing with positive words I read about in Little Girls Can Be Mean, but thought was a little hokey. “So you got warned today. How did that make you feel? Embarrassed? Scared?”
“Sad,” she said.
“Did you think Mrs. Adams didn’t like you anymore?”
“No,” she said.
“Did you think that mommy or daddy or God didn’t like you anymore?”
“No,” she said.
“Okay, then. I want you to say something. Say, Ainsley, I forgive you.”
She closed her eyes tight then opened them. “Okay. Done. I said it to myself.”
“Say, Ainsley, I still like you. It’s okay that you made a mistake. Everyone makes mistakes.”
“Say, Mommy still loves me. Daddy still loves me. Mrs. Adams still loves me. God still loves me. And I still love me.”
“Okay. Done,” she said smiling.
“If you were coming home every day with your name on the board, I’d be upset. It would tell me you were being disrespectful to your teacher. But you’re not. So this tells me you’re normal. Everyone gets into trouble every once in awhile. Now give me a kiss.”
With that she jumped off my lap and rejoined her troop. That was it. A few words of affirmation. Not only from me, but from herself. Seriously. It changed my mind about positive self-talk.
Have you had any experiences like this with your kids?
My daughter has come home with similar worries but I’ve never thought to handle it quite like you did. Thank you for modelling an excellent solution to offer her reassurance and affirmation that mistakes are ok and that she’s still loved. I will be trying this!
I just bought your book! I can’t wait to read it. I’m a fellow heart mom who has read your blog for a long long time. Congratuations on getting it to print!
Powerful message in this post today. I had to share it on my fb page.
That’s awesome! I think us grown-ups could use a little of that positive affirmation talk too. Going to try it when I get on the scale tomorrow for sure!!! I am going to download your book this weekend. Can’t wait to read it! Thanks for all the affirmation you gave me about starting my own blog, you inspired me!
After “getting my name on the board” today by a new boss, I needed to hear these words of affirmation. Thanks for sharing!
Ainsley looks so grown up! Great post 😉 You’re a great mom!
Oh I really liked how you handled that situation Leighann! Those were just the right things to say! You get an A+….