My daughter is six. Recently, she's found our wedding album, and is completely obsessed with looking through it, finding people she knows, exclaiming over how young everyone looked (thanks a lot, kid). And, of course, that leads every so often into a discussion of what she might have at her wedding. Something I'm totally not ready to think about yet.
The picture above is her at age three, wearing my wedding dress. It was a fun pinterest idea of something we can pull out at her own wedding and display, if it doesn't completely embarrass her.
My four-year-old son is evidently now engaged to two different friends, who are both three. One asked him to marry her, and the other just declared that they were going to be married when they grew up.
So, what's the point of all this?
Helping children navigate the world of romance is a huge responsibility, and that becomes more obvious with each passing day in my house. As parents, it's not only our job to show them what a marriage is supposed to look like, but we also have to explain things like dating and who is okay to love or kiss or hold hands with or marry eventually. Not to mention why some people don't stay married or get remarried or ... the list goes on way too long. You get the idea.
But even narrower than that, we have to explain what romance is and what is okay versus not okay. And that means I have to define romance. Have you ever tried to do that?
In case you haven't, I encourage you to. Because it was good for me to think about. Here's what I came up with.
Romance is wanting to make someone else happy so much that you do things out of the ordinary for them. It can be as simple as picking up a frosty on the way home because you know they had a bad day, or even taking over dinner because you know their head is hurting. It could be making sure they always get time to take a shower by themself. Or agreeing to a date you don't really want to go on because you know it will make them happy. See what I'm talking about? It's putting that person in a place of importance where they're on your mind and heart even when apart. And making sure they know it.
Do I always get romance like that? No. But that makes it even more special when I do.
And, it makes it that much more important to make sure our kids see it when it happens, too. Because I want them to grow up and marry people who will be willing to give them that place of importance and who they can reciprocate with.
The world is telling people all sorts of lies about love and romance. It's up to us to make sure our children know the truth. How do you let your children see the truth about romance and love in your life?
This is a place for me to share thoughts and ideas not just related to writing. Thoughts about what's going on in my life, about an idea I got that I thought shareworthy, or just a funny anecdote.