Sep 222010
 

I get very anxious about Chase being away at school for eight hours each day. Don’t get me wrong, I would get much more anxious if he were NOT away eight hours a day, but still. That’s the thing about parenting. Anxious if you do, anxious if you don’t. I’ve been trying to figure out what my anxiety is really about lately. It’s not that I don’t trust the school, I do. It’s not that I think they’ll teach him too much . . . as a matter of fact I worry they won’t teach him enough. Chase and I have a little ritual. I say, “What did you learn today, honey?” And Chase says, I learned about Christopher Columbus!” And I say, “Great! Grab a cookie and sit down. Let me tell you that sweet little story from the Native Americanpoint of view.”

The thing is that I’m not worried about my little man’s brain. I’m worried about his heart.

When I was in elementary school, all of these little teeny things happened to me that made me embarrassed, or confused, or sad. Like when I had to stand against the huge cafeteria wall with my nose pressed against the big purple painted grapes, or when all the girls teased me at my lunch table because my hair was greasy, you could start a car with all that grease, they said. Or when the boys never chased me at recess. Or when a classmate brought a Playboy to school, or when my friend Jennifer called me a gay wad. What’s a gay wad? But these things didn’t seem big enough to talk about, and I didn’t want my parents to know that all wasn’t perfect . . . so for whatever reason, I kept all these little sad and confusing things secrets. And keeping secrets became second nature to me. Which didn’t turn out so well for me for a couple decades.

So when it comes to how my kids are doing at school, I don’t worry about academics. I worry about social things. I worry about their time at lunch, at recess, on the bus. Mostly, children learn to read and add and sit still eventually. But not everybody learns that he deserves to be treated with respect and so do others. And not everybody learns that he is OKAY and loved and precious and that it’s all right to feel hurt and all right to hurt others, as long as he cleans up his messes. And not everybody learns that different is beautiful. And not everybody learns to stand up for himself, even when it’s scary. So I worry about that. Seven is young to navigate a big social sea all by oneself. I feel like thirty four is too young sometimes.

Last week, I snuggled in bed with Chase and told him all about the embarrassing, sad, scary little things that happened to me in elementary school. I told him that I never gave Bubba and Tisha a chance to help me, because I kept my worries in my heart. So my worries became problems. I told him that this was a shame. Because the beautiful things about being a kid, is that you don’t really have any problems. You might have worries, but if you share those worries with your parents, they don’t have to become problems. I told him that his daddy and I are his team. That his worries are really our worries. And that the most important thing in the world to us is his heart. And we talked a lot about this scripture.

“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again, Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 4: 4-7

I explained to Chase that every night before bed, he and I were going to lay in bed together and try to remember any sadness or worries that he might have had during the day. And I told him that we were going to talk about them and then pray to God to help us with them. And then he’d be able to relax and sleep soundly. Knowing that God and mommy and daddy were on it.

Over the past two weeks, as Chase and I have laid in bed together and remembered his worries . . . I’ve learned a lot about my little boy that I didn’t know before.

Like . . . He thought that the first few weeks of school were a “try out” and if he wasn’t perfect, he could get cut. I was tempted to let him keep believing that one.

Li Like . . . the reason he always wants his dad to take him to baseball practice is that I embarrass him by cheering for everybody whether they hit the ball or not. You’re not supposed to cheer and yell THAT’S OKAY when people drop the ball mom. It’s NOT GOOD to drop the ball. I don’t know if you really understand baseball, mom.

L L Like . . . there’s a big girl on the bus who may be a bit of a bully. And Chase is scared of her. He told me this Sunday night. I told him that his job on Monday was to find out what color her eyes were. That’s all. Just find out what color her eyes are, Chase. I need to know that. Chase came home yesterday and said, “MOM! Her eyes are BLUE! But listen . . . while I was looking at her eyes to find out what color they are for you . . . she quit her mean face and looked away! And she didn’t look at me mean the rest of the bus ride! And then on the way home . . . she didn’t look at me at all! She just passed right by!” Yep, always look them in the eye, buddy. Mean can’t handle the truth.

Anyway, I’m just happy about this. This worry talk is a little ritual that’s worth keeping. Because if we empty our hearts every night, they won’t get too heavy or cluttered. Our hearts will stay light and open with lots of room for good new things to come in.

Tell me your worries, honey. And we’ll pray. Because that’s what God, and family, are for.



Carry On, Warrior
Author of the New York Times Bestselling Memoir CARRY ON, WARRIOR
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  60 Responses to “Rejoicing”

  1. […] you have a few extra minutes, jump over to Momastery and read my favorite back-to-school read ever. It’s worth the extra time, trust […]

  2. […] the talking. Inspired by an old Momastery post that details author Glennon Doyle Melton’s bedtime routine of talking to her son Chase about any […]

  3. This is beautiful. I hope to have this sort of relationship with my Connor. Time, love, patience and understanding is the greatest gift we can give to another soul. I’m still learning to be the best mama I can be, but you give great advice.

  4. You are so good with words. What great wisdom you have in this. I too have a little boy (he is 8) and the worry about his “heart” at school (not the academics) sounded just like what you had. I found it too much and I have been hs’ing him instead because for me it is too hard to send him. I love how you told him that his worries were for God, you and his daddy. I want to do this!

  5. This is a beautiful post. My reason for commenting though is not about the topic of the post, but the Scripture you quote. I am sad today as tomorrow marks the first anniversary of my father’s death. He was a very good man and a very good dad. I miss him all the time. That was my father’s favorite Scripture and one he recited frequently to himself as his prayer, especially in his last few years. Here I was just clicking around, no real intent, no real pattern, no method, and here, RIGHT HERE, was my dad telling me not to worry – thank you Dad, and thank you, Glennon.

  6. omg. I remember worrying about this every day the first three months after my son was born. I was so SENSITIVE, all the way through middle school…and I never told my parents…and then I, too, turned to certain behaviors that sent me down roads that I spent years trying to forget (and now actively forgive myself for when they creep up in my head again). I can’t stand the thought of the other kids hurting his feelings because he is so SWEET and open and smiles at everyone…and, even now, when people don’t smile back at him, I get mad. I need to start writing these parenting tips down for later…or wait for the book ;-) Such a beautiful and simple way to take care of Chase’s heart. love it.

  7. I love this post! You are adorable. Every time I have a parent teacher conference I tell my son Derek’s teachers that I am so glad he is doing well in school but I am ten times more concerned about his heart… “Tell me who he is in class. Tell me if he is thoughtful and kind or selfish and mean. Tell me every flaw you can possibly find so we can help him overcome it!!! I promise I won’t be mad at you.” ;) I have found that I learn so much more about him when the teacher knows that I want every last petty detail about his character. It really helps. And now… thanks to you… I have another great tool for digging deeper with him.

  8. You are amazing. I felt the same way about school growing up, and I think it is so awesome that you shared this. What an incredible way to bond with your kids and teach them that they can tell you anything. Thank you for sharing. (ps. I cannot stop reading your blog.)

  9. Thank you so much! My guy is 4 and struggles with worry and anxiety. Lots. (Sometimes genetics really sucks big pointy rocks!) So *I* struggle with worry and anxiety over *his* worry and anxiety. You’ve just given me an awesome idea to help talk to him. Perhaps if we start now we can delay or avoid having to use anti-anxiety meds like we’ve been warned may likely happen. And if he needs them, he needs them. Regardless, he needs a coping mechanism and this is an excellent ritual to be a coping mechanism.
    Found you through “Don’t Carpe Diem” and have been hooked since. Thank you and God Bless you for your heart and your shameless openness!

  10. Great post! I am a Mommy to two young boys. Having grown up with sisters “talking” was normal, I’m worried that in a household of boys this may not be the natural thing. I’ve always wanted to teach my boys to recognize their feelings and to share and talk about them. This is a fantastic way to encourage them to open up.

    As a new follower to your blog, I’ve enjoyed reading backwards. I love chuckling to myself at my computer, and shedding tears minutes later. I’m looking forward to each new post.

  11. I am in tears. You write so beautifully and your values, your parenting, your raw honesty is feeding me in a way I didn’t know I needed tonight. After having a really rough day as a mom to my angel baby daughter. Thank you. Your children are blessed to have you. I feel blessed to have you, in this moment.

  12. What a BEAUTIFUL post! I love it!

  13. Beautiful post! I love this idea. I can think of so many things that hurt me as a kid that I didn’t tell anyone about, or when I did, my parents didn’t always make me feel like they were my team. I want my kids to know that their dad and I are on their team.

  14. My God… Please excuse my horrid spelling below. Between typing on my iPhone and typing too fast trying to get my thoughts and excitement out… It turned a bit messy ;). And after reading your letter to Chase (Damn Straight!), I realized that even more so how much you understand the feelings I have about my 7 year old. Probably shoulda commented there but didn’t find that post till after the fact. Still. It just cemented how much of a girl crush I may or may not have on you ;). You have me thinking. Thinking about a lot that I’ve needed to be thinking about. Lots of head scratching (and not because this mom barely has time for a shower.. Which is true nonetheless). Time for changes. Good ones. And I think you and this warm wonderfully comforting place may just be what I’ve been looking for.

  15. So happy to have found this blog. I actually came upon it through Kiran’s blog. And it seems we also share a common love and awe for Evy’s family and Declan and The Carmical’s. I have been reading backwards, and saw the post with Andie and the ladies that now lead The Fairy GodMother project. So amazing to see how far they have come and just how strong their devotion is to these local families.

    Anyway.. I loved this post. It really resonated deeply for me. I have 3 boys, 2 that are in elementary school. My oldest is all boy, everyones BFF, Mr.Popularity. He’s strong, smart, and has a strong will. My 7 year old. Oh my 7 year old. Sweetest child you’ll ever meet. Sensitive, loving, attentive (bordering on too attentive), and very much in touch with his, err, “feminine side”. At 3 he was vaccuming while in my heels. Wanted to try on my wedding dress. Loved lipgloss. Now, at 7 it’s mellowed a bit. He loves jewlrey, is very concerned with not only his clothing but is always critiquing mine (why do you always wear sweat pants mom?!), loves all the tween girls shows like Wizards of Waberly Place, Shake it Up, etc. He has a passion for Adele and any Glee soundtrack he can get his hands on. I love these things about him. But these are also things that make him a target. I’ve already noticed him changing tastes… Loved Justin Beiber, but now, it’s Girl music (prob heard from his older bro too many times). He loves singing and dancing so I asked if he would want to join the local music theater camp…… No way. Too embarrassing. I see him changing and I so worry that it’d because of his peers. He mostly hangs out with the girls in class because the boys are rough and mean at times. I told him that they are just probably jelous that the girls like him more :). It’s so hard because I want him to fit in, to be accepted by his peers…. But at what cost? Losing that special part of him that makes him HIM? Last month he threw away the 2 dolls and a ton of outfits. I asked why and he said he didn’t know… But I could see it on his face.
    I just want to wrap him up in bubble wrap, and maybe a cute tee shirt of mine as he likes to wear to bed :).

    Thank you for the wonderful idea. With 3 boys, one being 2, it’s really hard to give each some one on one time I know they need. It’s just finding the balance that’s always alluded me.

    I look forward to being a part of this family of REAL moms, and women. Who are already inspiring me, and making my laugh my ass off ;)

  16. I love this and thank you for sharing your story and experiences. Truly inspiring and uplifting to keep healing. Thank you!

  17. amazing. powerful. something i hope i never forget.

  18. I know this is almost a year old…but I ran across this last night. My oldest son is off to Kinder next year and I worry about him. Maybe too much.

    I love your insights and have been struggling to figure out how to let him go and be on his own without my guidance throughout the day. I know I need to trust him to God, but that is so hard for my controlling self.

    The worry talk each evening is a wonderful idea and I'm going to try and implement this soon. Though, with my early riser, we may be better off with an early morning snuggle!

    Thanks so much for sharing your experiences!

  19. You are a good Mom Glennon.

  20. Thank you, Glennon. This helps me so much as I have just spent the night worrying about my five-year-old's shy, sensitive, and kind little heart. Navigating through the social world IS scary at ANY age especially in THIS day and age! I know MY worrying does NOTHING for her. But I wake up this morning to find this thoughtful post of yours. Coincidence? I think NOT. I am going to try your method and see how it goes! Thank you so much!

  21. Glennon, you said what has been in my heart and mind perfectly. I don't worry about my big kindergartner academically because he is prepared and smart but he is also sensitive and kind and that scares me. I love it about him but don't want him to be hurt by others because I know how awful that feels. I was spanked in kindergarten, screamed at constantly by my first grade teacher but thought I shouldn't tell anyone. So, I think I could use those stories as a great lead in for helping my guy with his worries. I worry about him hurting others too…ugh I worry I worry but that is my thing.

  22. "Always look em in the eye. Mean can't handle the truth"- man, i love that.

    Although I am not a mama, I am a cousin and an aunt to littles and this resonates so much. My cousin is going into the 6th grade- and she's an old soul full of love and kindness. When I got to family vacation- my aunts pulled me in -"you gotta talk to em, shes super nervous about the new school- making new friends"

    She's been called fat, and other ugly names. She's so kinda, and very smart- and it hurts my heart so much that I pray that she'll remember all the love that was poured into her by her family and hears you're beautiful, you're smart- you're loved.

    I hope I store this one in the memory bank for when my day comes…."look em in the eye, mean can't handle the truth."

  23. Glennon-you and this awesome post were the talk of Starbooks (ATES bookroom) yesterday. Even we moms with 24 years under our belt can use a new tip now and then and your post hit the spot.

    Waiting for the book, baby.

  24. Like so many other people who commented this very subject has been on my mind A LOT. I love love love what you wrote and can't wait to get started with this in our own home. Thank you!!!!!

  25. Every post I read of your I think, "no, this is my favorite!" But today's hits home in so many ways… I have all the same fears for my daugher (now in kindergarten) that you wrote about soooo well. The second time I attempted to have the "open up to me" chat, my daughters response was, "mommy, do we have to talk about this again?" Wow, she did hear me the 1st time… but that doesn't mean it worked. I'm now taking a chapter from team Melton – If I open up about my fearful moments, maybe she will as well! thank you so much for sharing with us – this post and all the others:-)
    - Tracy

  26. Love this entire post and comments too! My big guy just started 1st grade… Some days it is so hard to extract anything from him… This is a great way to start a quiet conversation at bedtime! Thanks for the wonderful words!

    Schlenks family – thinking of you all.

  27. I just don't think there's many things worse than knowing your kid isn't being included by other kids. That moment when you watch him bravely walk up to another child and ask to play…and he gets the "no." Just torture. Ouch is right. Brings up every sadness and insecurity and fear we've had our whole lives.

  28. Thanks for the post. Last night at her sister's soccer practice my youngest was verbally abused (ha, that sounds so dramatic.. but it was SO mean!) It broke my heart to hear two other 3 year old girls telling her "Go away, we don't want to play with you"… "We have a secret club and you can't be in it".. at THREE! Even teeny girls can be vicious.

    We have three girls and it was incredibly hard to watch my oldest daughter go through first grade. She was so quiet she could barely speak in class and when I would ask her who she played with at recess she'd tell me "myself, I just ran around." ouch.

    G– this story would make a great book for kids– I know I would buy it! It would be a great way to get children to open up like Chase.

    Thanks again, I am going to talk to my kids about this today. Have a great night- Jen M

  29. Lovely post! I think this is something that maybe I need to do with my husband, just as adults … remember that we are on each other's team and we can talk to each other and God about what's been going on each day.

    More prayers for the Schlenks coming from this direction. Keep us updated on how things go.

  30. WOW. WOW WOW WOW EVERYBODY!!!!!!!

  31. Truly wonderful, thank you Glennon! This will help me immensely in my interactions with loved ones/children of any age, in addition to my own wrestling matches with memories and anxious thoughts — we can all benefit from good “worry talks!”

    More than anything else in "Bird by Bird," it was this passage that stuck with me – made me feel angry, sad, annoyed, and misanthropic at first, but then ultimately grateful — for the articulation by someone else of what I silently sensed, having been on different sides of things at various stages in life and in varying degrees of awareness:

    “There was always that one kid against the fence. How could the rest of us feel Okay if there wasn’t? . . . You couldn’t even risk looking at the guy against the fence. Bad juju. If you so much as glanced at him, a visible empathetic arc would stretch between you, almost like a rainbow, and link you two in the minds of your peers forever.”

    Oh, and this line of Terri H.’s got me right in the gut: “And how friends would shy away because your kid must be some kind of freak to harm themself because a jerk bully tore into their spirit and they didn't want this poison to affect their precious perfect kids.” So much sad truth in that . . .

    Thank you, Glennon for naming the problem and for creating and implementing a loving solution that will heal your children on a daily basis and help to fill them with the sensitivity, self-respect, kindness, and healthy self-love needed to heal others beyond the home.

    May we all come to have the courage to shed our fears of rejection/rejection-by-association and focus more on actually creating those empathetic rainbow arcs wherever we go – boldly, lovingly, and joyfully.

  32. So amazing, G. At 33 years old, I still to this day rely on similar conversations with my mom which provide me with such comfort and sanity. I honestly don't think there is a more priceless gift that you can give to your children than this. Providing them with such a sacred time and place where they can rid themselves of fear and worry and anxiety associated with such a big, brutiful world is beyond vital. As you know, protecting my little one's heart is such a concern of mine too. Thank you for setting such an incredible example with your love and wisdom.

    aSchlenk, you and your family are in my heart and prayers…

  33. Why do I always want to say "Best post ever!"? I mean, they can't all be, but still. LOVE your ritual and will be stealing it beginning tonight. Praying for the Schlenks family situation, too. I heart Momastery!

  34. G,
    LOVE THIS!!! I have the same worries for my kids – it's all about the social stuff, because that can be the most joyful and the most painful. I will remember this for my little ones.
    You are a great mama!
    Love, J

  35. Man, I love this. So so much.
    I love that the kids will always know they can be fearless because they have the A-team with them. I love Mean Can't Handle the Truth.
    I love you.
    Sister

  36. Thanks for giving us perspective Jennifer. So difficult for everyone involved. I have friends in their 30s and 40s still dealing with how divorces and separations were handled when they were growing up.

    This is why I really love Momastery. G always reminds us that how we treat each other matters. All the time.

  37. glennon. thank you! i needed these words for my joshua. i've read them 3 times. you are WISE. so so wise. thank you!

  38. "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God." I have this same prayer in a frame I bought and it says in big letters I WILL NOT WORRY. It's the first thing I see when I wake up and the last thing I see when I got to sleep.

    I too have the same anixety but I fell mine is worse because I'm dealing with a girl and girls are SO mean to each other (not saying that boys aren't) but girls are just bitches, even at the tender age of 8. It actually started in Kindergarten and that's when big mean ole mama bear came out of her den with fists flailing.

    I do not like it when other girls are mean to my daughter and I have to hold myself back most of the time so I don't get arrested or saying something that will ultimately make me look like an ass and I really have to try very hard not to find out where they live so I can go tell their parents how horrible they are.

    AND THEN I witnessed MY precious daughter being a bully to a girl (how can this be?) and once again big ole mama bear came out of her den, only I was the mama bear to the girl my daughter was mean to. I just do not like mean girls and I will not tolerate it, even when it's my own child being the mean one.

    ASchlenk: Been in your shoes, only I'm the Mom. Never was jealous though, just grateful. You can actually read one of my guest posts here on Momastery. My daughters Dad is getting ready to move here in the next couple of months across the country to Texas and I have no idea how that's going to end up working but from the Mom's point of view and I'm not defending this women for the nasty things that she has done but I have found that my ex has told stories to his now new wife about me (me and her are actually friends) that were totally not true. She ended up convincing him to take me to court and hold me in contempt because of what he was telling her. The judge of course saw through his BS but just try and remember that there are two sides to every story. I hope that whatever happens, it is in the best interest of the child and I will be praying for you all (even the Mom).

  39. ASchlenk: I couldn't agree more with wholetthishappen, write EVERYTHING down, keep every email. I have 3 binders full of notes, emails, letters, text messages printed out, you name it I have it. Even when times are great, I STILL keep everything.

  40. Sending heartfelt, prayerful thoughts to the Schlenks family.

    Btw, is this blog copyrighted? Can I please say these exact words to my 5yo who started kindergarten this year and thinks his uniform shorts are "girl shorts because everybody can see my knees" and now only wants to wear pants in this hot Louisiana weather…

    "I kept my worries in my heart. So my worries became problems. I told him that this was a shame. Because the beautiful things about being a kid, is that you don’t really have any problems. You might have worries, but if you share those worries with your parents, they don’t have to become problems. I told him that his daddy and I are his team. That his worries are really our worries. And that the most important thing in the world to us is his heart. And we talked a lot about this scripture."

    Great blog. Great stuff.

    xoxo,
    Suzy

  41. Love this G! I'm totally filing this away for when Gabe goes off into the world!!

    xoxo – cookie

  42. Tovie: Thanks for helping A. She's my cousin and Amma's godmother and I love her very, very much.

    All of you…I love these comments. They are inspiring and comforting me. So ridiculously lucky to have all of you in my little life.

    Love, G

  43. Great post for me as I head out to register two of mine today…long story. My oldest is 7 and NERVOUS. My 5 year old is excited.

    ASchlenk: My sister married a man with a three year old daughter. The years following have had so much unnecessary heartache. It has been painful to watch. I will pray for you guys. I would also encourage you to continue pushing for some legal rights. And after watching my sister and her husband doing it, I would say that being organized and taking notes on everything is what saved them. They had every email, text message, etc. saved. They also paid for a mediator out of pocket. Not sure if any of that helps, but they now have my niece 50% custody.

    Bless you all in this.

    Tova

  44. aSchlenks family is in my prayers. (I tend to not read posts before I post mine and didn't see this). What a horrible situation.

  45. Thanks so much for this today, G. I've had similar concerns about AJ since he started kindergarten this month, so I'll start this ritual with him as well.

    We talk about how powerful Team Butler is all the time, but I admit that I often forget to let him know that God is our head coach. Plus, my sweet, intuitive boy has already picked up on when Mom and Dad are busy/tired/stressed and will actually stop mid-sentence and say, "Nevermind" when he's telling A and I something. I'm not sure what breaks my heart more — the fact that he does this, or that usually I let him.

    So, this new bedtime ritual will help us both. He can release his worries, I can slow down and truly focus on him and hearing his heart, and we can both get grounded in the knowledge that God is Team Butler's coach. Mommy is more like the water boy.

    Thanks again for planting a seed, G. I'll keep you posted on what sprouts. xoxo

  46. I so needed this. My 9-year-old is going through something, I don't know what, and all the usual avenues aren't cutting through. Sometimes we end the day sitting in bed and listing 5 things we're grateful for on any given day, and some days it's ok just to say "well I made it through the day". But I think addressing the worries might be a good way to let her know that we are Her team, just as you and Craig and God are Chase's team. Thank you, thank you for sharing this.

  47. Oh Glennon –
    This is so what I needed to hear. My little girl loves kindergarten. Yet, I am always hoping all is going well and can tell that some days are definitely better than others (yet she doesn't open up much for me to know why some days are better). As you mentioned, I am not worried about her brain, but definitely her heart. Thanks for sharing some of your anxiety and some of what you do. It helps to know that I am not alone worring about my little one as she is gone all day at school. Also, I'm going to be using some of you worries/problems/team philosophy. I love that. It is so true.

    Thanks again for sharing part of you and your family with us!

  48. I'm praying for you, Schlenks family.

  49. Thank you for that example this morning. I've been thinking a lot about my own childhood hurts and how they have impacted my adult life. And I worry that I may not be enough to help my girls through these tough times – I am going to try your Chase ritual with my open-hearted, feel-it-to-the-core 7 year old. Thank you again for sharing your mommy journey – so nice to know none of us are alone in this amazing and overwhelming blessing.
    xoxo
    Kent

  50. Terri. Love you.

    Al, I am just heartbroken. I am painting an A on my hand right now. With Sharpie. So every time I see it I'll remember to pray for you and T and little A.

    So much, so much love to you.

    Gbyrd

  51. P.S. The anxiety never ends.

  52. I love how you are handling "hearing" his heart – and love how you suggested checking out the eye color of this bully. Your kids are going to be alright. I wish I knew someone like you when my kids were bullied – someone to give me insight, because many people thing bullying is a right of passage or that YOU yourself or your kid did something to deserve it. And how friends would shy away because your kid must be some kind of freak to harm themself because a jerk bully tore into their spirit and they didn't want this poisen to affect their precious perfect kids.

    My kids paid for that pain and still do. Thanks for letting us in your heart about elementary school. It has a lot to do with how we grow. I still worry about my two girls today. So affected by JERKS.

    Love to your family. Keep up the heart talks.

  53. I am going to tell all of you about my one and only worry at the moment. I got married 19 days ago. I am now a wife and stepmother. The wife thing is easy, stepmother is very hard. The mother of our little lovely is not happy that we have found love and happiness in one another. She sabatoged my bridal shower, bachelorette party and even went as far as reporting the child missing to the police on our wedding day, despite giving her permission for her to be with us for the whole weekend.

    We live in Ohio, which means a father has zero rights to his child. He is recognized as her father and pays child support. Still he has no legal right to even lay eyes on his child. We are going through the legal process in hopes that a judge will do what is best for everyone but it will take months to even process the case. So we wait teary eyed struggling to get through each day. My husband sends text messages in attempts to see his daughter. The mom calls the police when he leaves a voicemail.
    It has been 18 days since we last saw her, 18 days of torture. 18 days of anger and frustration at a system which blindly gives females the right to use their children as weapons. The Schlenks need some support, we need some prayers, we need our family to be whole.

  54. Is Team Melton holding tryouts?

    LOVE THIS POST!

    I can only imagine the ball of nerves parents must be!

    I get nervous for my nieces wondering how body conscious they are getting as they near high school, or whether my niece's jokes are masking something else, and do they still love who they are and believe in themselves…

    I'll have to share this post with them and their parents to remind them that we're a team!

    My Mom taught me the look into their eyes lesson. Unfortunately, it didn't stop my bully from taking my lunch anyway. I had to resort to sneakier, vengeful tactics. Like I may have spiked my lunch sandwich with a hot-n-spicy achaar sauce and tabasco sauce… maybe.

    Good luck Mamas and Papas, I'm not sure the anxiety ever ends!

  55. WOW!! Didn't even know I needed that. I'm certainly one of those people who carry a lot of her childhood around with her … I keep thinking I'm over it but then something pops up. And recently it's really been bothering me. I'm always thinking I want different for my children … I want BETTER. I think this approach is certainly the perfect place to start!! And while my husband and I do a "younger" version of this with our 3yo during prayers at night, I now see a clearer vision of where I want this to go as he gets older.
    A family I was a nanny for used to play "sad mad glad" at the dinner table to open up about their days … I always loved that time. I guess because I wanted a team too. Now I'm going to make sure that my kids know they have a TEAM!!
    Thanks G for the encouragement!!

  56. I love the look her in the eye idea. Amazing! I have the same anxiety over my Charley going off to Kindergarten. I am also not so much worried about the academics but on him continuing to make the right choices to be a kind person. Great post!

  57. You're a good momma. No one wants to feel alone. And when we don't, how much easier is it to handle our worries? With the help of friends, family and God. :)

    As you say, "a person's a person no matter how small." You get that and demonstrate it in your actions to your little people. I love it and now I need some tissues.

    Miss Molly

  58. I have often told mine that we are a team and that I am their biggest fan! Sometimes I think they wish I wasn't such a noisy fan! Thanks for the reminder this morning. As they get older (my Chase is now 17), asking about worries or what is bothering them gets tougher.

    A scripture that I share with my kids is:
    "Be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:9

    Keep up the good work!! Parenting is a challenge at every stage and every age.

  59. It seems so obvious to just see what color eyes mean has but I would've never thought of that! What a great, intuitive mother/human you are, Glennon! Chase's worries are defenseless against Team Melton. Way to go!

    …And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus is sort of right along with what I am "getting" out of reading The Shack…

  60. I love how you told Chase that you were HIS team. I think so much of our little life is spent navigating through this tough world and often hiding and being scared. What a great gift you have given him, by snuggling up with him every night, letting the walls down and giving him freedom from his fears. Bravo.

    I am saving this one for a reminder down the road…

    -Courtney

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