About six months ago we moved my daughter into a “big girl” bed. And about then, when it would get late and time for “nigh nigh”, I started a ritual with her.
She would lay down in her bed, we would say some prayers, and then I would say.
“Just remember, you’re smart, you’re special, and you’re beautiful.”
And then I would list everyone in her close family that loves her.
“Your Daddy loves you
Your Mommy loves you
Your Jude brother loves you
Papa and Grandma Folkins love you
Papa and Grandma Bogen love you
Uncle Sean loves you
Auntie Anna loves you
And cousin Elena loves you”
I never really had a plan, I just remember thinking that my daughter needs to know that she is amazing. And she needs to remember all the people who will come running if she calls.
So today I went home for lunch. And it was right around her nap time. Without thinking, I volunteered to put her to bed.
She laid down, and then I said
“Now just remember, you’re-”
But before I could finish, and still with a binky partially in her mouth, she said
“-yur smarr, yur spesh-al, and yur beu-i-ful”
Then she gave me a big hug and smiled.
You could wreck my car, steal my laptop, or even lay me off, but you would not be able to ruin my day today. My daughter knows she is valuable.