time to talk

4 12 2006

As a parent, there are some talks with your children that are more memorable than others…for instance, “THE Talk” – that’s the one where you discuss things like: where babies come from, sex, God’s design for all of this. This talk (THE Talk) is only a precursor to many more talks – at least for most people it should be that way. Thankfully, it has been for me in my relationship to my son. He’s unashamed of asking me things, what certain “words” mean (thanks to the public educational institute known as middle school), and more questions beginning with the word, “Why?” THE Talk is a great one to have and should be entered into with prayer, honesty and a desire to comunicate truth to our children based on their level of understanding – which is usually a much higher level than we often want to admit.

Then there are several other “talks” – no caps, no emphasis overarching the future destiny of their purity and innocence – these are talks about things like tooth faries, the easter bunny and of course the jolly old man in the red suit. Well, yesterday I had one of these “talks” with my son (THE Talk had already been had a while back…the sequals to THE Talk are continuing and its my goal that they never cease…well, at least until the eve of his wedding one day many years from now). Back to this “talk” – it happened by design, planned out carefully and I simply let it develop naturally. I let him ask the questions…I just wanted to know if he wanted to see Santa to inform him of his Christmas wish list – the answer…”no.” That’s cool…the follow up question was…”then how’s he going to know what you want?” – “Dad, I think I’m over the whole Santa thing” was the response – good response – silence – more silence – even more silence!

Then came the question…”Dad, is Santa Claus real?” – Well, I answered honestly and with a desire to only help him realize that the answer he was asking for, he already knew. You see, he figured out long ago that there really was no tooth fairy (it didn’t help that he discovered some of the first teeth he lost – oops!) and he also realized there was no Easter Bunny (“come on dad, a six foot bunny hopping around giving presents”) – so he’s a smart enough kid to know the obvious regarding any others. Know what was really cool? – he wasn’t dissapointed at all – he realized that it was all part of the “tradtion” – now, if you know me, you know I don’t like that word all that much z(‘tradition’) – but you know what? – my 11 year old son gave me a new understanding of the word ‘tradition’ that I’ve never realized before. “Yes, it’s all part of the tradition” – and what a beautiful tradition it is! (or was for him, but still is for our daughter…one that he now gets to join in on and enjoy).

The beauty of all of these “talks” (including “THE Talk”) is that they all stem from a regular desire to keep communication open and honest in our home. We’ve ALWAYS told our kids they could talk to us about anything – and they can! Without fear or trepidation, they can come to us and we will talk – but mostly we’ll listen!

One other thing…he had plans to make a major announcement and see if he got coal in his stocking…also, he was going to fingerprint the glass of milk and the cookie plate to see if it matched up with ours – and we don’t even let him watch CSI…




One response

9 12 2006
Jeff Smith

that’s right TRADITION! you gotta love it ’cause it’s everywhere… T R A D I T I O N

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