Monday, May 5, 2014
Rituals Are Active Caring
As tall as Alex at 6-feet 2-inches, Adam, with his pleasing deep voice and generous nurturing nature, is all about giving hugs and "I love you-s" out on his fifteenth birthday. Just as he is on every day, really. He greets me every morning with a big hug, and as is his custom, apologizes for sleeping in so late, again, at which point I remind him, again that he's growing and he's a night owl, no one either expected him nor needed him to be up at dawn or even several hours after that.
Still, as grown as Adam is, we hung fifteen balloons the night before, put up the birthday banner, put flowers in a vase, wrapped each gift in carefully chosen paper and ribbon, set the table and baked a cake. As Alex and I prepped for Adam's day, Alex noted that rituals speak to a parent's reliability. Predictability isn't easily had, even in our own homes, sometimes, so rituals are an excellent way to keep the measure of our days and years. Rituals inform our children that we are to be counted on, that we are consistent, observant, and caring. More, rituals tell them that they are worth our effort, are worth celebrating, and are worth joy. We show our children, through rituals, how to love others, and how to be loved. There's comfort and symbolism that belongs to them. Rituals are active caring.
Happy 15th Birthday, Adam, our sweet, caring, creative, son!