Kids Talk About Love
By Jo Frost
“Love is that feeling that comes from my heart beat.” – James, age 5
“It’s what I feel when you read me a bedtime story at night.” – Kayla, age 6
“Love is a warm butterfly. All fluttery and light.” – Addyson, age 5
In honor of Valentine’s Day, myself and my team asked children to tell us what love means to them. I’ve also been tweeting out a call to have you ask your kids what love means to them and tweet me their 10-15 second video reply. I’ll be retweeting some of my favorites leading up to Valentine’s Day.
What we noticed in the responses we’ve received so far, and in asking the kids we know, is that children recognize love in the every day. It’s not about the grand gestures for them. They understand early that it’s the little things that make us feel like “a warm butterfly” (to quote Addyson) or “smile when you’re tired” (as Terri, age 4, put it). And it’s what they learn by example, as five-year-old Elaine understands when she says “love is when Mommy gives Daddy the best piece of chicken.” When you ask your kids what love means to them or what it feels like, listen to their answers. If they assign it a physical feeling, look for when they display that and recognize when they feel they are loved.
Sometimes it’s during little moments that we , as busy parents, might not even stop to think about to see at first glance. Let your kids tells you what about the love they witness. Ask them what it makes them feel: Excited? Brave? Happy? Smiley? Assigning it emotions and meaning will also help your child to understand not only what they’re feeling, but the things that make them feel good. Is it playing with blocks with their little brother? Having a sleepover with their grandparents? Going to the park as a family?
Bring more of what you all love as a family and as individuals into your home and your lives. Embrace what brings each family member happiness. It might make your heart beat just a little faster.
Happy Valentine’s Day!