Tonight during bedtime prayers Grady said “and God if you hear me, I want to go home earlier.”
My heart sank. Is he not enjoying this? Is he homesick? Does he wish we’d never left?
Of course the other two kids followed suit and said the same sort of prayer. I told them how much Jesus loves when they talk to Him, kissed them goodnight and walked out with a lump in my throat.
After talking to Michael in a complete panic and saying things like “If they are struggling for real we have to go back” ... I decided to handle it in true “Laine fashion”.
So I grabbed some popcorn and Zevia, walked in their room, turned the lights on and started singing 🎤 “We really shouldn’t be doing this - and we all know whhhhyyyyy”
> insert: if you’re country, you’ll have this song stuck in your head now. You’re welcome <
I pulled their blankets off their beds to the floor, poured a pile of popcorn right in the center and said to get down here for a little “chat party”. After some giggles and questions and answers I have a clear heart.
They do miss home. More specifically their cousins and friends and Copper (our dog). But when I said “listen guys, we can go back. You’re opinions and desires matter just as much as mommy and daddy’s and we make decisions as a family” ... they were both saying “No No No” lol! What?!
They clarified that they want to keep traveling the world - they just want to go home for a visit soon. But then keep traveling. Oh and that it would make them feel much better if we could just go to the beach tomorrow 🤦🏼♀️
My heart is full tonight. Not that we’ve got it all figured out or that things are perfect. But it’s full because I know that they KNOW their opinions matter to me. They know I care deeply about what they say and how they feel.
I’ll never forget something my Papa Ross said to me. I was telling him how he was always so good to me as a kid. At family gatherings when all the other grownups would be talking and doing their own thing, he would talk to me or play with me. He would listen to what I was saying. I was bragging on him for how he made me feel. He didn’t understand why I was saying that ... he simply said “Well kids are human beings too.”
And they are. So often it’s easy to put them off. Not truly listen to what they are saying or minimize it. Treat them with less respect and dignity than we treat a boss that we don’t even like.
Just imagine how the world could change if our next generation was raised with “listening parents”.