Recently, my 8 year old daughter was telling us about her school day. A friend of hers did not feel like playing together during recess. And then matter-of-factly my daughter added, “She wanted to play with the cool kids.”
What?! When did cool kids enter the picture? You are in third grade. I didn’t think they showed up until middle school. Who invited them to recess?
After exchanging a look with my husband that conveyed all of this, I asked my daughter what made a cool kid cool. She went on to explain the third grade version of coolness, all characteristics she seemedly does not have.
My mother mind was spinning. Ok, Suzanne. Big moment here. How are you going to handle this? You want her to be able to talk about these kinds of things. Being a cool kid doesn’t matter, right? But it matters to her. How will you respond?
My five year old son had an immediate response.
“You’re a cool kid in this family”.
Wow! Just like that. The “right” response flowed from my son’s lips to my daughter’s heart. All I had to do was step back and watch.
You are a cool kid in this family. Isn’t that what we all want? We may not label it as “cool kid”, but we just want to be accepted for who we are in our own homes. We want to be loved. Whatever quirks or shortcomings or flaws we bring, we want our family to embrace us.
When we have someone to play with at recess, it does make things better. When we have someone at home that gets our jokes, we feel understood. When we belong at home, we belong somewhere.
My hope for you is you are a cool kid somewhere. Even if you weren’t at recess today.
Date: November 12, 2014