“It only takes one person to whisper a little doubt in your ear for it to begin.”—Brenda Yoho, #Bethesolutiondaily
I am a mother, grandmother, and retired educator. Like most of you, I have been asked by a child, “Do you believe in, (Santa Claus, The Easter Bunny, The Tooth Fairy, Ghosts, Fairies, or God) the list goes on. The wonderment and the fears placed in the minds and hearts of our children need validation from a person they trust. If we do not provide them with s strong foundational support, guidance, and knowledge, their minds and hearts will be influenced by others with different agendas.
My youngest grandson is with me each day as we prepare for Kindergarten next year. He has a personality that is uniquely his own, but when he makes a statement to me, he follows with, “Right, MooMoo” for validation. When we are working on lessons, he will say, “Was that 100% correct.” At his age, he already knows his target and the validation he seeks. We have talked a great deal about it being okay not to know as long as you continue trying and learning.
At the end of the day in my 5th-grade classroom, I had just finished reading the polar express. It was time to begin to get our coats and materials from our closets at the school. (Our building was ancient, and it was the last year students would be attending this building.)
As students gathered their things, someone said, “Did you hear a bell ring?” No, said a student. Then another one said, “I just heard a bell.”
They had everything, and the other classes looked ready to go. The 5th grade was prepared to go on their Christmas break. We dismissed so they could get down the stairs to the buses first and then the car riders and walkers. Then everyone began to hear them. Bells were ringing. The teachers were looking at the kids and asking what was wrong. “Can you hear the bells?“a student said. No, you better get going; the bus will leave you.
The 5th-grade staff had decided to read the Polar Express and pin bells inside the kids' coats. We brought in volunteers to finish the job during lunch so the kids would not catch on. Our last words after reading the book were, “Everyone at some point will place a little doubt in your mind, and it will reach your heart. You do not need to keep their doubt as your own. When you keep hope, love, and gratitude in your heart and mind, believing is the magic of what you want to make it be. Enjoy all of the wonderment of the day. Look at your friends, family, homes, and everything around us. Always believe we will work hard to make tomorrow better than today.”
Placing doubt in others is something we have been experiencing in our lives for a long time. It is when we do not recognize how much it is impacting our lives that it is scary. Now we can see from data the rise in depression, anxiety and suicide the fears and doubts are reaching our children at a higher impact than believing in Santa Claus. The most important thing we can do today is to stop placing doubt in the minds and hearts of our children. How?