Just how powerful is it to say I love you to your kids?
Those three little words I love you mean so much. As adults it is the phrase we long to hear from another to tell us they care about us, from our parents it is three words that give us a feelinng of security and acceptance, from our children they are three words that tell us we are doing everything right.
I will never forget the first time Roo said I love you mummy. We’ve always told her we love her, as parents you just do. One night I tucked her into bed, read her a bed time story (from memory it was Peter Pan), gave her a cuddle, told her I loved her and a voice replied back “I love you too mummy.”
My heart melted into a similar mush you get at the bottom of a Calippo ice lolly because you can’t suck it quicker than it melts. These were the words I wanted to hear.
Still today nearly 4 years on I love to hear them. Family is important to me, and it’s beautiful to here Roo say she loves all of her family right down to all our pets and our fish. A child’s love is untainted, unequivocal, uncynical and knows no boundaries.
It doesn’t matter if you banish them to the naughty step, take away their pudding, refuse to buy yet another tacky character comic they still love you. Adults however become cynical about the three words, we get angry because they are used too frequently or not frequently enough.
After a really bad day, when the world world seems to conspire against you, when you question your abilities as a parent, a wife, a partner the uttering of those three words by the person closest to you is like someone has taken a tube of super glue and magically mended everything and fixed .
Love is powerful enough to change lives in incredible ways. Every year it makes grown men buy flowers, oversized teddy bears and huge cards on February 14th. Equally it makes women relinquish control of powerful objects like the remote control and as parents it will mean that at 2am in the morning we will look up the nearest 24hr pharmacy just to get pain relief for our kids.
Love is such a beautiful and powerful emotion that it has the power to change the person who is loved - because to be loved is to be changed. You can change that person into believing in themselves. And because of this, every day, at least once a day I tell Roo that I love her and she means the world to me. Hopefully, it is helping to shape her as a well rounded, emotionally open and self assured adult for the future.