This week I am naming a group of amazing kids as our WARRIORS! The cool thing about owning and running a business is that I pretty much get to do what I want. This group of kids includes two of my children and they are WARRIORS on this day because it is opening night for Music Man Jr.! Children ranging in age from 6 to 14 will take the stage in front of a packed theater tonight and perform their hearts out after rehearsing diligently for a couple months. It’s amazing watching an ensemble come together, from songs, to choreography, to props and more! At the dress rehearsal last night there were some missed cues and missed lines, but these kids are so professional they didn’t even blink, some even threw some improv in there to cover up and protect their fellow actors. That to me is a true WARRIOR! So Kids Company, this week’s for you! Break a leg!
This week Totem Tamers has decided to give thanks for all of you, so YOU are our WARRIOR WEDNESDAY! Yes, you, ok and you, and you and absolutely you, too! We all have so much to be thankful for, even in the face of tragedy, suffering, loss, and challenges. The mere fact that we experience loss for example, means that at some point we experienced gain, and that in and of itself is a blessing. Be thankful for the people in your life that you love and love you. Be thankful for the people in your life that you don’t even want there, because that is the mark of a true WARRIOR! Be thankful that you have a choice, any choice at all, that makes you special and blessed. Give yourself thanks too for taking the time throughout your day to take some deep breaths to keep calm and therefore spreading the calm around you. You are calm. You are thankful. You are special. You are a WARRIOR!
Two weeks ago Totem Tamers introduced you to Max, one of our loyal WARRIORS! Max was kind enough to share with us how he has used Totem Tamers and how it has helped him. Here is the video testimonial again in case you missed it!
Max, of course, had some help from his amazing mom, Anna. That’s why this week, she is our WARRIOR WEDNESDAY! We asked Anna to share with us her thoughts on parenting a child with anxieties. Here is what she wrote:
“Sometimes we forget that childhood is not all fun and games. There are fears to overcome and obstacles to surmount. What may seem like a small concern to us adults, can feel like climbing Mount Everest for a kid. It’s important to remember that all children feel anxiety from time-to-time. I am the mom of a super anxious child. My son has had worries big and small since he was able to talk.
In Kindergarten he wouldn’t leave the house for one whole week. We almost had to cancel a vacation to Hawaii because he saw something in the brochure that was too scary. He won’t go to stores where there are too many people and noises. Restaurants are out of the question because the music provokes anxiety. Forget about last week when we visited my brother’s house, which was decorated for Halloween—yikes!
You are probably wondering why this kid isn’t in therapy. Well he is, and it is helping. But like all things in life, it’s a process and along the way we use different tools. For the past year, totems have become part of our toolbox.
Bear came to the beach in Miami to protect against jellyfish. Who knew Owl would get Max on the subway for the first time in 2 years this summer? And most recently, Shark–the animal he loves and respects most in the world–has been swimming with him to his new school.
Each time Max breaks through to the other side of one of his worries it’s a victory–an invaluable lesson that he can survive the worst of what he fears. In this way, Max reminds me of the many prisms through which we all experience life. And every day I remind him just how very proud I am of him.”
Thank you for sharing your story Anna, and for being a WARRIOR in the battle of understanding and awareness. To learn more and find a totem of your own, please visit www.totemtamers.com.
It’s hard. There, I said it! I am very blessed, and I will gladly say that too. I am a single mom to three incredible boys who all have their own wonderful and challenging personalities. My youngest at 6, and my oldest at almost 13 years old, are both in their “testing” phases. Trying to see how far I can be pushed until they get in to trouble or really tick me off. I got that handled. They are almost easy. My middle on the other hand, at just about 10, is simply trying to make it through his day without having too much anxiety or overwhelming emotions. He is the tough one. This morning, it was breakfast. He couldn’t decide what he wanted and that upset him. That he had no absolute desire for pancakes, or waffles, or cereal, was just enough to set him off, and send my morning on a roller-coaster of defensive positions. As a parent I begin to question my process. Am I giving too many choices? Am I not giving enough choices? Am I giving him enough attention to get to the bottom of why he’s really upset? Is he really just upset because he can’t decide what he wants? Where is the dog? Is the fish floating? Are the other two boys brushing their teeth, getting their socks and shoes on? Am I wearing my pajamas? Still?
This is just an example of what any morning in my house will look like, and I am sure many of you can relate. Some of you can relate and you only have one kid and two parents in the house! But if that one child suffers from anxiety, it is a constant effort to try and maintain everyone’s equilibrium because we all know what happens when our sweet, adorable, incredible kid starts to succumb to overwhelming feelings: our anxiety kicks in! How are we going to help them? How do we get everything else done that needs to be done in the amount of time we have left before we have to get everyone out the door to get to school on time? How can I keep it together without screaming at the top of my lungs that I don’t really give a shit if you have two different colored socks on and no one else will either? Oh, and let’s not go in to whether I manage to get dressed properly, have a cup of coffee, brush my teeth or my hair or heaven forbid have a shower or a bite to eat! Yet, here I am, in a quiet house, taking my deep breaths and eyeing my totem. All kids got off to school and none of them in tears. I am having my second cup of coffee and even cooked myself an omelette! My middle boy even apologized this morning for his indecisiveness, which was so sweet and unnecessary, but appreciated and acknowledged nonetheless.
The happy ending? Absolutely! It’s exactly the same as the beginning: I have three incredible boys who have their own wonderful and challenging personalities.
Stay well and calm!
From the world’s greatest city, in the world’s greatest country, Bear would like to personally thank everyone who exercised their right as an American to vote! Bear would also like to congratulate all the winners and acknowledge that since the system of democracy has proven to work, we are all winners.